During an overly pious phase in my childhood, my favorite holiday was Maundy Thursday. I had nothing against the traditional favorites of Christmas, Easter, and Halloween. I did, after all, grow up in Hershey, Pennsylvania—raised in the First United Methodist Church on Chocolate Avenue, where the domes on the street lights resemble Hershey’s kisses and the fragrance of chocolate hung often in the air. I had no complaint against holidays that brought bonanzas of candy and gifts.
But, at some point in my young life, I began to understand that not every child lived in a town with a chocolate factory, an amusement park and zoo, four swimming pools and nine golf courses. Some children were hungry and lonely and had no home in which to live. When this first glimmer of comprehension about suffering in the world came to me, I began to like Maundy Thursday. Continue reading