Maundy Thursday

“Then he took a loaf of bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, ‘This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.’” (Luke 22:19)

On Maundy Thursday (also known as Holy Thursday), Jesus instituted the sacrament of the Holy Communion at the Last Supper (cf. Luke 22:14–19). Then he withdrew to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray, where Judas betrayed him into the hands of his enemies: the temple authorities, the Sadducees and the Roman soldiers.

In Finland, Maundy Thursday is celebrated actively, and the Eucharist is always offered. In many parishes, the Maundy Thursday Eucharist vividly re-enacts the Last Supper.

A three-day celebration of the cross and resurrection is observed (the Triduum Sacrum) from Maundy Thursday to Easter Day. As the Eucharist of Maundy Thursday ends, the altar may be stripped and draped in black.

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