you call us to fullness of life:
deliver us from unbelief
and banish our anxieties
with the liberating love of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
On the first day of Unleavened Bread, when the Passover lamb is sacrificed, his disciples said to him, ‘Where do you want us to go and make the preparations for you to eat the Passover?’ So he sent two of his disciples, saying to them, ‘Go into the city, and a man carrying a jar of water will meet you; follow him, and wherever he enters, say to the owner of the house, “The Teacher asks, Where is my guest room where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?” He will show you a large room upstairs, furnished and ready. Make preparations for us there.’ So the disciples set out and went to the city, and found everything as he had told them; and they prepared the Passover meal.
When it was evening, he came with the twelve. And when they had taken their places and were eating, Jesus said, ‘Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me, one who is eating with me.’ They began to be distressed and to say to him one after another, ‘Surely, not I?’ He said to them, ‘It is one of the twelve, one who is dipping bread into the bowl with me. For the Son of Man goes as it is written of him, but woe to that one by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been better for that one not to have been born.’
While they were eating, he took a loaf of bread, and after blessing it he broke it, gave it to them, and said, ‘Take; this is my body.’ Then he took a cup, and after giving thanks he gave it to them, and all of them drank from it. He said to them, ‘This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many. Truly I tell you, I will never again drink of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.’
from Psalm 74
O God, why have you utterly disowned us?
Why does your anger burn
against the sheep of your pasture?
Remember your congregation that you purchased of old,
the tribe you redeemed for your own possession,
and Mount Zion where you dwelt.
Hasten your steps towards the endless ruins,
where the enemy has laid waste all your sanctuary.
Your adversaries roared in the place of your worship;
they set up their banners as tokens of victory.
Like men brandishing axes on high in a thicket of trees,
all her carved work they smashed down with hatchet and hammer.
They set fire to your holy place;
they defiled the dwelling place of your name
and razed it to the ground.
They said in their heart, ‘Let us make havoc of them altogether,’
and they burned down all the sanctuaries of God in the land.
There are no signs to see, not one prophet left,
not one among us who knows how long.
Look upon your creation,
for the earth is full of darkness,
full of the haunts of violence.
Let not the oppressed turn away ashamed,
but let the poor and needy praise your name.
Arise, O God, maintain your own cause;
remember how fools revile you all the day long.
Forget not the clamour of your adversaries,
the tumult of your enemies that ascends continually.