Mar 20, 2008

Mandate Day.

Today is Maundy Thursday in the western Christian Calendar.

Prior to Lent beginning this year, I was asked by a children's Sunday School Teacher if I knew what Maundy Thursday meant. She didn't know, but wanted to tell the kids what it meant. I had forgotten.

Here's the Wikipedia definition:

The word Maundy is derived through Middle English, and Old French mandé, from the Latin mandatum, the first word of the phrase "Mandatum novum do vobis ut diligatis invicem sicut dilexi vos" ("A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you"), the statement by Jesus in the Gospel of John (13:34) by which Jesus explained to the Apostles the significance of his action of washing their feet. The phrase is used as the antiphon sung during the "Mandatum" ceremony of the washing of the feet, which may be held during Mass or at another time as a separate event, during which a priest or bishop (representing Christ) ceremonially washes the feet of others, typically 12 persons chosen as a cross-section of the community.

A new commandment has been given to us, a new mandate... to love one another as Christ Jesus loved us. Why oh why could I not remember what the word maundy means?

Lord Jesus Christ, son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

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