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When is Maundy Thursday 2018? The meaning behind Holy Thursday, the Last Supper and how the Queen marks occasion; Her Majesty takes part in the ancient Royal Maundy Thursday service, where she will distribute coins.

Byline: Jo-Anne Rowney

Maundy Thursday marks the start of the Christian three-day celebration ofEaster.

The Queen is set to take part in the traditional Royal Maundy service in Leicester Cathedral on the day (March 29), joined by the Duke of Edinburgh.

But what isMaundy Thursday, why is it celebrated, how is it marked, what is the history behind it, and what happens in the Queen's service?

We have provided a round-up of all you need to know.

Also called Holy Thursday, Covenant Thursday, Sheer Thursday and Thursday of Mysteries,Maundy Thursdaymarks the beginning of the three day celebration of Easter, an important time in the Christian calendar.

The day comes before Good Friday, and this year it has fallen on March 29.

It commemorates the last supper of Jesus Christ, whenChristians believehe shared bread and wine with his disciples.

According to the Bible, Jesus also washed the feet of his followers and commanded them to love each other.

The word Maundy comes from the Latin word 'mandatum', meaning command.

The Queen will markMaundy Thursdayby distributing alms as part of a tradition dating back to the 13th century.

She will be accompanied by the Duke of Edinburgh for the service at Leicester Cathedral where the Maundy Money will be distributed to 91 men and 91 women - representing each of her 91 years.

The 182 recipients of the Maundy money are senior citizens who will be given the gifts in recognition of the service they have given to the church and their local area.

Easter 2017

The Maundy Service dates back to the 13th century and used to involve the sovereign giving money to the poor and washing their feet.

The tradition of feet washing ended with James II in the 18th century and now the Queen commemorates the day by offering alms to senior citizens in recognition of service to the church and community.

The Queen will hand two purses - one white and one red - to each person during the service.

The Queen presents 'Alm' to worthy senior citizens in traditional Royal Maundy service

Easter ideas

The red purse contains a [pounds sterling]5 coin, commemorating the Centenary of the House of Windsor and a 50p coin commemorating Sir Isaac Newton, while the white purse contains Maundy Money minted especially for the occasion in the form of one, two, three and four penny pieces making up 91p to reflect the age of Elizabeth II.

For historic reasons, the sum of [pounds sterling]5.50 is made up of [pounds sterling]3 for clothing, [pounds sterling]1.50 in lieu of provisions and [pounds sterling]1 for the redemption of the monarch's gown.


Credit: The Times

The Queen greeting church goers at a service

Credit: Jack Hill/The Times/ROTA

Her Majesty The Queen, and The Duke of Edinburgh, at a previous Royal Maundy Service at Blackburn Cathedral

Credit: Getty

Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh attend the Easter Sunday Service at St George's Chapel in 2016

Credit: UK Press

The Queen is set to take part in the traditional service today

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Title Annotation:News,UK News
Publication:Daily Mirror (London, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Mar 15, 2018
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