Holy Thursday: Maundy Thursday

Last Supper
(Credit: ABCgallery.com)
Last Supper
(Credit: ABCgallery.com)

Holy Thursday is recognized in Catholicism because it’s the anniversary of the Last Supper.

The feast occurred four days after Christ’s return to Jerusalem, which is best know as Palm Sunday. Mere hours after the Last Supper, Judas betrayed Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane and because of Judas’ betrayal to Christ after the Last Supper, He was crucified on Good Friday.

However, Holy Thursday is more than just the day before Good Friday; it’s actually the oldest celebration of Holy Week. It is such an important day to Catholics because on Holy Thursday Catholics celebrate the three most imperative parts of the Catholic Faith: the Sacrament of Holy Communion, the priesthood and the Mass.

While the disciples were eating their last meal with Christ, he blessed the bread and wine and spoke the same words that Catholic and Orthodox priests still use today. He said to His disciples to “Do this in remembrance of Me.” When He said that he made the disciples priests.

Towards the end of the Last Supper and after Judas had already left, Christ said to His disciples, “A new commandment I give unto you: That you love one another, as I have loved you, that you also love one another.”

The Latin word for “commandment” is mandatum which is why Holy Thursday is also called Maundy Thursday

Unlike some people may know, Easter is the most holy Holiday in the Catholic religion. Although some get it confused with Christmas, which is a widely commercialized holiday, the celebration of Easter is so  important because it reminds its Catholic followers to have faith, hope and love in their God.

Following Holy Thursday is Good Friday and then Easter on the next Sunday.