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Maundy Thursday

Maundy Thursday

Feria Quinta in Coena Domini

Today is the Thursday of the Supper of the Lord, also known as Holy Thursday, or Maundy Thursday, from the Latin word mandatum, referring to the mandate or commandment given by Christ at the Washing of the Feet.

From The Liturgical Year, by Dom Prosper Gueranger:

The Mass of Maundy Thursday is one of the most solemn of the Year…. The colour of the vestments is white, as it is for Christmas Day and Easter Sunday; the decorations of the Altar and Sanctuary all bespeak joy: and yet, there are several ceremonies during this Mass, which show that the holy Spouse of Christ has not forgotten the Passion of her Jesus, and that this joy is but transient. The Priest entones the angelic hymn, Glory be to God in the highest! and the Bells ring forth a joyous peal, which continues during the whole singing of the heavenly canticle: but, from that moment, they remain silent, and their long silence produces, in every heart, a sentiment of holy mournfulness. But why does the Church deprive us, for so many hours, of the grand melody of these sweet bells, whose voices cheer us during the rest of the year? It is to show us, that this world lost all its melody and joy when its Saviour suffered and was crucified. Moreover, she would hereby remind us, how the Apostles, (who were the heralds of Christ, and are figured by the bells, whose ringing summons the faithful to the house of God,) fled from their Divine Master and left him a prey to his enemies.

 

Traditional Roman Martyrology for March 28th

ST. JOHN of Capistran, confessor, who is mentioned on the 23d of October.

At Caesarea, in Palestine, the birthday of the holy martyrs Priscus, Malchus, and Alexander. In the persecution of Valerian, they were dwelling in the suburbs of Caesarea, but knowing that in the city the heavenly crown of martyrdom was to be gained, and burning with the divine ardor of faith, they go to the judge of their own accord, rebuke him for shedding the blood of the faithful in torrents, and are forthwith condemned to be devoured by beasts for the name of Christ.

At Tarsus, in Cilicia, the holy martyrs Castor and Dorotheus.

In Africa, the holy martyrs Rogatus, Successus, and sixteen others.

At Rome, St. Xystus III, pope and confessor.

At Norcia, the abbot St. Speus, a man of extraordinary patience, whose soul at its departure from this life was seen by all his brethren to ascend to heaven in the shape of a dove.

At Chalons, in France, the demise of St. Gontram, king, who devoted himself to exercises of piety, renounced the pomps of the world, and bestowed his treasures on churches and the poor.

℣. And elsewhere many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.

℟. Thanks be to God.

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