The Exodus reading is about the covenant Moses mediates between God and the people of Israel. After the Israelites accepted the covenant, Moses sprinkled blood on them. The people of Israel believed in the steadfast love of God in keeping the covenantal promises made to them. In Hebrews, Jesus is depicted as both the mediator and sacrificial victim on behalf of the people. Through God’s life, death, and resurrection, Jesus made a blood offering that inaugurated a new covenantal relationship between God and God’s people. By grace through faith, we are redeemed for eternal life and renewed in the image of God.
Mark’s Gospel recalls Jesus blessing and giving thanks for the bread and wine. God said, “Take, this is my body” (14:22) and “This is my blood of the covenant which is poured out for many” (14:24). God established a covenant that would last forever, one that would show God’s complete gift of love for us, for all time. Jesus’ words reverberate at each Eucharistic celebration as the gifts of bread and wine are changed into God’s Body and Blood. We participate in the covenant sealed by God’s blood. We celebrate the new identity given to those who share among them Jesus’ Body and Blood and then become what they eat and drink.
“We remember how you loved us to your death, and still we celebrate, for you are with us here. We believe that we will see You when You come in your glory, Lord. We remember, we celebrate, we believe.”
Sister Margaret Flood, O.P.