The Gift of Love
The Cenacle, the room on the second floor spoken of by the Gospel, is one of the most treasured and beautiful places connected to our faith. The current walls of this cross-shaped room are thus not exactly the walls of the room Jesus was in. However, we do know that the uninterrupted tradition of the Church has recognized this place in which Jesus was together with his disciples on the last night of his earthly life for what we call the Last Supper. The foot-washing is the symbolic gesture through which Jesus prepared his disciples to think about the mystery of his death and to understand how the Eucharist is the renewal of that same gift of love. “Through my death, which is the gift of my body and blood, I am doing the highest service of life for you that can be done. I wash your life; I save it; I bring it into full communion with the Father.” This is why Jesus threatens to exclude Peter from having any part in him if he rejects Jesus’s gesture. This is the approach that every disciple of the Lord Jesus should take: mutual service through the gift of one’s life for the salvation for brothers and sisters.
—from the book Encountering Jesus: A Holy Land Experience by Vincenzo Peroni