Monday, March 29, 2010
Last week sometime reader Joe sent me a link to a BBC article about the Last Supper. It referred to a study of paintings through the ages, indicating that the depicted portion sizes of the supper have grown steadily over time. Our email banter about the article included my suggestion that we now call it the All-You-Can-Eat Mandarin Last Buffet. The day after Joe's alert similar articles were everywhere. Here is one example:
Over the last 1,000 years, the portions and plates depicted in 52 paintings of the last meal Jesus ate with his Apostles have grown bigger and bigger, finds a study to be published in the April issue of The International Journal of Obesity. From dishes to bread to entrees, it’s all been supersized, according to findings by marketing professor Brian Wansink of Cornell University and his brother, Craig Wansink, an ordained minister and professor of religious studies at Virginia Wesleyan College.
Hm. At least this study reminds us that the Last Supper was a meal, a seder meal marking pesach, the Jewish Passover. When we gather on Maundy Thursday we will sit at a table with chunks of bread and several chalices. It will be our attempt to remember a meal which provided both spiritual and physical sustenance.
What is your reaction to this "super-sizing" revelation? Do you attend a Maundy Thursday service? Does it help that ours has an invitation to an actual table? Will you over-eat?