Last week, I heard an interesting interview on NPR. It featured a gentleman who mentioned, that one positive thing he has experienced from the recent outbreak of the Coronavirus, is a recovery of mealtime with his family.
What could be more everyday than the family meal? Out of that gathering stories are told, the day’s events rehearsed, and the family unit is at its most intimate time. The meal is more than for feeding the body; it is also for feeding the heart in fellowship among those whom we know and trust the most. The family meal, then, is multi-generational event: remembering the past, living the present, and looking to the future. Older generations pass traditions on to the next generation who will likewise come together for meals.
In Mark’s gospel today, we are presented with the family meal of Jesus and his disciples. This, though, is no ordinary meal. It is the meal of meals that recalls when the Israelites prepared to be liberated from Egyptian slavery.
But today’s Gospel meal speaks of a different liberation. Our liberation from sin and death, brought by the blood of Jesus on the cross. At the Eucharistic Fest, we are reminded that saints past, present and indeed, you and I, gather in the most profound and intimate of families, the Church. It is the place where we rehearse the Christian family history, instruct the young, and feed the soul. It is the stuff of future memories.~Fr. Joseph Alsay