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What Is Maundy Thursday?—How to Celebrate During Holy Week

As we celebrate Holy Week, the week leading up to Easter, you may start to wonder, what is Maundy Thursday?

“In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.” (Philippians 2:5-7 NIV)

The week leading up to Easter is sometimes called Passion Week, and no wonder: the fervor of God is on full display.

His fervor against evil and for good.
His fervor against sin and for righteousness.
His fervor against hate and for love.

What is Maundy Thursday?

Three days before Easter, we come to Maundy Thursday. “Maundy” comes from the Latin word “mandatum,” meaning command, order, or commission. (And do you see our English word “mandate” as well?)

What is being commissioned here is the “new commandment” Jesus gave His disciples after He washed their feet:

“Just before the Passover Feast, Jesus knew that the time had come to leave this world to go to the Father. Having loved his dear companions, he continued to love them right to the end. So he got up from the supper table, set aside his robe, and put on an apron. Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the feet of the disciples, drying them with his apron. ‘You address me as ‘Teacher’ and ‘Master,’ and rightly so. That is what I am. So if I, the Master and Teacher, washed your feet, you must now wash each other’s feet. I’ve laid down a pattern for you. What I’ve done, you do. I’m only pointing out the obvious. A servant is not ranked above his master; an employee doesn’t give orders to the employer. Let me give you a new command: Love one another. In the same way I loved you, you love one another. This is how everyone will recognize that you are my disciples—when they see the love you have for each other'” (from John 13 MSG).

Elizabeth Spencer
Elizabeth Spencer
Elizabeth Spencer is mom to two daughters (one teen and one young adult) who regularly dispense love, affection, and brutally honest fashion advice. She writes about faith, food, and family (with some occasional funny thrown in) at Guilty Chocoholic Mama and avoids working on her 100-year-old farmhouse by spending time on Facebook and Twitter.

Faith and Excellence: Katie Ledecky’s Path to the Paris 2024 Olympics

As one of the most decorated female swimmers in history, Katie Ledecky's career has been a testament to her relentless dedication, exceptional talent, and unwavering faith.

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The Paris 2024 Summer Olympics promise to be a spectacular event, showcasing both traditional and innovative sports. Here are 20 things you should know before the Olympic games begin.