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Maundy Thursday - Definition of Maundy Thursday


The Last Supper by Hans Leonhard Schäufelein (1511).
anagoria/Public Domain
Definition: Maundy Thursday is a common and popular name for Holy Thursday, the first day of the Easter Triduum, the final three days of Lent before Easter. Coming at the high point of Holy Week or Passiontide, Maundy Thursday commemorates Christ's Last Supper, at which He instituted the Eucharist, the Mass, and the priesthood.

Maundy Thursday gets its name from the Latin word mandatum, which means "commandment." Near the end of the Last Supper, after Judas had departed, 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 name Maundy Thursday is today more common among Protestants than among Catholics, who tend to use Holy Thursday, while Eastern Catholics and Eastern Orthodox refer to Maundy Thursday as Great and Holy Thursday.

You can find the date of Maundy Thursday in this and future years in When Is Holy Thursday?

The Days of the Easter Triduum:

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Pronunciation: ˈmôndē ˈθərzˌdā
Also Known As: Holy Thursday, Great and Holy Thursday (used by Eastern Catholics and Eastern Orthodox)
Common Misspellings: Maunday Thursday
"Maundy Thursday is the first day of the Easter Triduum, the three days before Easter 2011."
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