What is Maundy Thursday?

  • 28 March 2013
A purse with Maundy money

Maundy Thursday is part of the Christian celebration of Easter and commemorates the night of the Last Supper as told in the Bible.

At the Last Supper, Jesus commanded that we should love one another and washed the feet of his disciples as an act of kindness.

To celebrate Maundy Thursday, the pope traditionally washes and kisses the feet of 12 people - usually members of the church.

In the UK, the Queen takes part in the Ceremony of the Royal Maundy where she gives coins called Maundy money to deserving senior citizens.

The word Maundy comes from the mandate - or command - Jesus gave at the Last Supper. In many countries the day is known as Holy Thursday.