Tuesday, March 31, 2020 at 12:11 PM

Read the daily quote from Pope Francis



To the people of God and parishioners of
St. Thomas the Apostle Church and St. Patrick Mission

Message from the desk of the Pastor:

Thursday Evening of the Lord’s Supper

Today we begin our celebration of the Easter Triduum—the three days that form the climax of Jesus’ life on earth.  Knowing that he is about to die, Jesus takes the opportunity at the Last Supper not only to tell the disciples what to do in the future, but to show them.  As we celebrate together this evening, let us reflect on how we can become better disciples by serving others, washing one another’s feet as Jesus did.

Liturgy of the Word: 

Exodus 12:1-8, 11-14:     The Passover is here: Slaughter the lamb during the evening twilight.

Psalm 116:  “Our blessing-cup is a communion with the Blood of Christ.”

1 Corinthinians 11:23-26:  Jesus said:   Do this in remembrance of me.

John 13:1-15:  Jesus said:  As I have done, so you must do.

All three readings tonight feature a ritual.  The Jewish ritual of Passover has its origin in the meal described in Exodus.  The ancient Israelites share, utilized, and ate the lamb according to God’s plan so that their freedom would be won.  Paul describes the ritual of the Eucharist, whose origin is found at the Last Supper.  Finally, John describes Jesus’ other ritual at the Last Supper, the washing of feet.  May what we do tonight and throughout our lives remain steeped in all three rituals so to witness to our faith and our mission.

Washing of the Feet:

Tonight we follow the command of Jesus to wash each other’s feet.  The first Eucharist was more than a simple meal—it was a sign of sharing in the sacrifice that Jesus would offer.  Part of that sacrifice was that all who shared at the table would wash one another’s feet.  To be people of the eucharistic table is to be people willing to bend down in humble service of all.

Prayer of the Faithful:

Commissioned by the Lord to wash one another’s feet, we bring to mind one another’s needs and ask God to hear our voices.

For our Church, that we may always be willing to kneel down and serve those in need, let us pray to the Lord.

That world leaders use their power to assist those in extreme poverty, so that no one suffers from lack of food, clean water, or basic medical care, let us pray to the Lord.

For those who are celebrating Passover, remembering the Lord’s deliverance of the Chosen  People out of slavery in Egypt, that they may continue to be freed from all oppression, let us pray to the Lord.

For those who suffer with chronic illness, whether physical or mental, that they may know the healing and comforting presence of God, let us pray to the Lord.

That we may take to heart Jesus’ call to service and find opportunities to wash one another’s feet, let us pray to the Lord.


This evening’s readings describe events steeped in history and ritual.  Each one is explicitly ordered to be repeated.  The first Passover, in which God liberated the Chosen People from slavery, is to be celebrated as a perpetual institution.  At the first Eucharist, Jesus asks his disciples to repeat this in remembrance of him.  After washing his disciples’ feet, Jesus tells them that this is a model to follow.  In celebrating the events of the washing of feet in our Church, we recall and renew God’s covenant, Jesus’ sacrifice, and Jesus’ call to ministry.

Unlike the other three evangelists, John does not write of Jesus’ establishment of the Eucharist.  We do not hear Jesus offering his body and blood in the form of bread and wine.  Instead he offers himself in the form of a servant, stooping down to do this most menial task for his disciples.  Whenever we gather to celebrate the Eucharist, we would do well to remember what Jesus did in this Gospel as well as what he said in the other three.  Jesus, our Eucharistic feast, gave himself in service to us.

Jesus washes Judas’ feet.  We sometimes overlook this fact, what with blundering Peter dominating the scene.  If anything, we catch the “but not all,” and perhaps supposed that Judas was excluded from the actual foot washing (John 13:10).  But he is not.  His exit comes in the next scene.  Jesus knows, of course, and Judas knew, that the devil had already induced him to betray Jesus.  Yet Jesus comes to Judas, basin in hand, towel around his waist, kneels on the ground, and washes the feet of the man who is about to betray him.  Therefore, even Judas’ feet are included when Jesus says to them (and us), “as I have done for you, you should also do”  (John 13:15).  No one is unworthy.

Question of the Day:

How will I follow the model that Jesus gave us at the Last Supper?  How can I give myself in service to others, even to those who have hurt me?

Fr. Philip J. Panackal

St. Thomas the Apostle Church and St. Patrick’s Mission
16602 FM 624
Robstown, Texas  78380

UPDATE:  March 31, 2020

All Holy Week services including Easter Sunday have been cancelled by directive from the Bishop due to continued COVID-19 pandemic.  You can visit the Diocese of Corpus Christi website www.diocesecc.org for  more information including live streaming that is and/or will be available.  This is a reminder that the daily scripture readings and reflections are on our home page ... see links below.   You can also visit the Facebook page for the Diocese of Corpus Christi for more information and/or visit http://goccn.org and click on live video for live-streaming of daily and/or Sunday Masses or you can tune in to KEDF-TV at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday morning. 

You are all in my daily prayers and are remembered in the private Mass that I celebrate each day.  I continue to pray that each of you receive many blessings from God especially during the upcoming Holy Week and Easter season. 

Act of Spiritual Communion:

My Jesus, I believe that You are in the Blessed Sacrament.  I love You above all things, and I long for You in my soul.  Since I cannot now receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart.  As though You have already come, I embrace You and unite myself entirely to You; never permit me to be separated from You.  Amen.

Fr. Philip J. Panackal

St. Thomas the Apostle Church and St. Patrick’s Mission
16602 FM 624
Robstown, Texas  78380


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St. Patrick Mission:
Saturday Vigil @ 4:00 p.m.

St. Thomas the Apostle:
Saturday Vigil @ 5:30 p.m.
Sunday Masses @ 8:00 a.m. &                                           11:00 a.m.

MONDAY - No Mass
TUESDAY: @ 12:05 noon
WEDNESDAY @ 12:05 noon
THURSDAY @ 12:05 noon                            (Holy Rosary 11:40 a.m.)
FRIDAY @ 12:05 noon                                 
(Divine Mercy 11:45 a.m.)

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