Although this whole week is considered Holy Week in the Roman Rite, today begins the solemn Triduum, with what is known as Maundy Thursday or as is commonly called Holy Thursday. This is the day all Catholics recall the events that took place the night Jesus was betrayed. The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is itself a recreation of the Passover supper. According to tradition, every Jewish family, gathered at table on the feast of Passover eats the roasted lamb, recalling the Israelites’ deliverance from the slavery of Egypt. At the “Last Supper”, in the Cenacle, Jesus the true paschal Lamb, conscious of his imminent death, offered himself for our salvation. In the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass under the species of bread and wine, Jesus makes Himself present in a real way with his body given and his blood shed. At the Last Supper, Jesus washed the feet of his apostles, inviting them to love one another as he loved them, giving his life for them. Repeating this gesture in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass this evening, the priest will wash the feet of twelve men. The liturgy continues as usual, with the exception of extra hosts being consecrated for use on Good Friday. At the conclusion of the evenings’ liturgy, the altar is stripped, and the Blessed Sacrament is brought to a place of exposition, where Maundy Thursday is closed with Eucharistic Adoration in memory of the Lord’s agony in the Garden of Gethsemane.
EASTER TRIDUUM BEGINS TODAY
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