Thursday, April 17, 2014

April 17: Maundy Thursday

Christ Washing St. Peter's Feet

History

Maundy Thursday is a profound day in the Church that begins the Holy Triduum (TRID-oo-um), the three solemn days before Easter. On Maundy Thursday, we celebrate the beginning of the ordained Catholic priesthood, and in many Cathedrals, there is a solemn Mass where the bishop blesses the oil of chrism used for baptisms and confirmations. (In my diocese, this is moved to the Monday prior).  We also celebrate Jesus beginning the Holy Eucharist at the Last Supper. At the evening Mass, you may see the priest or bishop washing the feet of some parishioners to re-enact Jesus washing the feet of His Apostles. In many parishes, the Blessed Sacrament is placed in a monstrance right after Mass, and round-the-clock adoration begins, lasting all the way to Easter Vigil Mass on Saturday night.

Activity

The theme for Maundy Thursday is cleansing. In many countries, families use this day for spring cleaning, scrubbing their homes from top to bottom. You may only have time to clean your living room today, but do a thorough job – move the furniture, scrub the floors, wash the windows (weather permitting). Don’t forget to attend Mass tonight!

All the Apostles of Christ, pray for us!

More reading for parents:

CatholicOnline