29 March 2018

Today is Maundy Thursday

Maundy Thursday begins the Sacred Triduum, the three holiest days in the Liturgical Calendar, Tomorrow follows Great and Good Friday, on which we celebrate the Passion of Our Lord. It is the only day in the Western Church on which Holy Mass is not celebrated. On Saturday, we celebrate the Vigil of Easter, the Feast of Feasts. And after the Holy Mass of the Vigil, the Lenten Fast ends!

Also called, Holy Thursday, the term Maundy comes from from the Latin mandatum, used by Our Lord before He celebrated the First Holy Mass Mandatum novum do vobis: ut diligatis invicem: sicut dilexi vos, ut et vos diligatis invicem (A new commandment I give unto you: That you love one another, as I have loved you, that you also love one another. Gospel of St John 13:34)

This evening's Holy Mass is called the Mass of the Lord's Supper from the fact that the first Mass was celebrated by Christ with the Apostles in the Upper Room on this day. In Rome, and in many Parishes around the world including St Wenceslaus, Wilber, the Pedilavium or Foot Washing will take place, remembering that Our Lord washed the feet of his Apostles before He instituted the Most Holy Eucharist.

In Britain, Maundy Thursday celebrations (also called Royal Maundy) have, for centuries, involved the Monarch offering "alms" to deserving senior citizens, one man and one woman for each year of the sovereign's age. These coins, known as Maundy money or Royal Maundy, are distributed in red and white purses, and is a custom dating back to King Edward IThe coins are presented in two leather purses, the white containing coins to the value of the same number of pence as the years of the monarch's age, and the red  containing a £5 and a 50p coin. Since 1822, rather than ordinary money, the Sovereign gives out Maundy coins,[71] which are specially minted 1, 2, 3 and 4 penny pieces, and are legal tender. Here is a short video of last year's Royal Maundy, which took place in Leicester Cathedral (stolen from us at the Deformation).

Until the death of King James II, the last Catholic King, the Monarch would also wash the feet of the selected poor people. I would assume that he continued to do so after Dutch William and his impious wife, Mary, usurped the Throne. Here are pictures of the specially struck Maundy Money. It is struck in Sterling silver, unlike other British coins, and is legal tender, but does not circulate because the value of the silver content is radically higher than the face value. This year, since Her Majesty is 91 years old, the recipients will each receive £6.41

In Czechia the day is called Zelený čtvrtek, meaning "Green Thursday", because the traditional Lenten meals of this day were made of fresh, green vegetables etc.

It is a public holiday in many formerly Catholic States, as well as in the State of Kerala in India because of the large (for India, a predominantly pagan country) population of Christians both Catholic and Orthodox in the State.

Read even more about today on FishEaters, the most comprehensive Traditional Catholic site on the web. Maundy Thursday

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