The origins of our family’s Holy Thursday Passover meal came out of a desire to make the day meaningful and symbolic and holy. Unfortunately, our local parishes had their services too late for babies and toddlers and bedtimes. Since my husband is not (yet) Catholic, his desire to drive the older children 30 minutes into town after a day at work was - and still is - just not there. As a re-vert to the Faith myself, I’m still learning what’s “kosher” (pun intended) when it comes to altering what’s desired by the Church (participating in Holy Thursday services with your parish), and what works better for my life’s situation (a meal at home with ceremony and stories and remembrance, and a bedtime good for everyone!). I’m hoping I’m not doing anything too “awful” by doing this instead of getting us to church!
I originally ordered the Source Book for Families, Lent & Easter from Women for Faith & Family. In it are a menu and the ceremony for the traditional Paschal Meal. So this is what we do every year on Holy Thursday. I have looked online and found other, simpler Passover meal ceremonies than the one found in the Source Book. I have used those when I had a newborn or just couldn’t get my act together. It is now entrenched as a solid tradition in our house, and it’s something the kids look forward to every year. Especially the foot washing!! And the extra spot we set for Jesus…
(This one is NOT Catholic, per se, but its language is less formal. Nicer for really small children.)