Maundy Thursday
Maundy Thursday is the day when Jesus had his last meal with his disciples, was arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane, and put on trial through the night.

The word 'Maundy' comes from the latin word 'Mandatum' meaning commandment and Christians remember Jesus' famous commandment to his disciples to "Love one another as I have loved you."     John 15:12
First Holy Communion
The Last Supper was a Pesach (Passover) Seder meal and Jesus gave a new meaning to two of the special foods used in the celebration: bread and wine. He told his disciples to eat and drink them as his body and blood. Jesus was referring to his crucifixion the next day when his body would be broken and his blood spilled.
Today most Christians celebrate this with a service in church called Holy Communion. Through receiving the bread and wine they commune (come into union) with Jesus. This union links them with God and their fellow Christians both now and in the past.
Different churches celebrate Holy Communion in different ways - some use unleavened bread as Jesus did at the Last Supper, whilst others like to use our everyday bread; some drink from individual glasses, others from a large cup called a chalice.

Tabernacle in St. Stephen's Cathedral, Vienna
Most Protestant Christians see the bread and wine as important symbolic reminders of Jesus, whereas Roman Catholic Christians talk about the bread and wine becoming his body and blood.

In Roman Catholic churches the bread and wine are called the 'Blessed Sacrament' and kept in a Tabernacle (cupboard) with a light burning in front of it.

Some churches celebrate Holy Communion every day, some every Sunday, and others once a month or less often. Other Christian groups such as the Salvation Army and the Quakers do not have the ceremony at all.

 

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