On Holy Thursday evening during Lent, when the service was over, the Eucharist was not brought back to the tabernacle. We processed to a different location where the Eucharist was placed in a very decorative mini tent. This action really piqued my curiosity. Why? What did it denote?
After some research, the Book of Exodus began to unravel my curiosity. In the Old Testament, the Jewish Nation worshipped God at the Temple in Jerusalem. However, when they traveled during the Exodus, God traveled with them. In Exodus 13:21, it is written “In the daytime, the Lord preceded them by means of a column of cloud to show them the way, and by night by means of a column of fire to give them light.” And when they rested, a dwelling tent for God was placed in their encampment. God was always with them, regardless of where they were. This holy dwelling was known as the Shekinah, which is a symbol of God’s abiding presence with the Chosen People.
Let’s now go back to Holy Thursday. Remember, Jesus was going to be crucified the next day. Did God leave us on Holy Thursday? I think not! In our exodus to a different location, we placed the Eucharist in the mini Shekinah. It was a reminder of the abiding presence of God as we journey through life, just as it was with the Jewish nation during the exodus.
Carry the faith with you. We are symbolic Shekinahs, in which God is dwelling— within us—wherever we are.