Qui, pridie quam pro nostra omniumque salute pateretur,
hoc est hodie, accepit panem: hese words we shall pray today in the Canon of the Mass. “
Hoc est hodie”
–the Liturgy of Holy Thursday places the word “today” into the text of the prayer, thereby emphasizing the particular dignity of this day. It was “today” that He did this: he gave himself to us for ever in the Sacrament of his Body and Blood. This “today” is first and foremost the memorial of that first Paschal event.
Yet it is something more. With the Canon, we enter into this “today”.
Our today comes into contact with his today. He does this now. With the word “today”,
the Church’s Liturgy wants us to give great inner attention to the mystery of this day,
to the words in which it is expressed. We therefore seek to listen in a new way to the institution narrative,
in the form in which the Church has formulated it, on the basis of Scripture and in contemplation of the Lord himself. . ...