LITTLE ROCK, AR – A local church celebrates Holy Week with a Passover meal tonight.
The public is invited to the Maundy Thursday observance at Saint Mark Baptist Church.
Also known as Holy Thursday, this is the Thursday before the crucifixion on which Jesus celebrated the Passover with his disciples, now known as the Last Supper.
Dr. Gary Hollingsworth, Pastor of Immanuel Baptist Church, will lead this service, which begins at 7 p.m. at the Saint Mark Worship Center on 12th Street.
Other Easter week activities for Saint Mark include:
- Friday, April 3 – Cries from the Cross: Christ’s seven last utterances from the cross as ministered by seven local and regional pastors. 7 p.m. Worship Center
- Saturday, April 4 – Easter Egg Hunt, 11 a.m.- 4 p.m., War Memorial Park. Registration is required, click here.
- Sunday, April 5 – Resurrection Sunday: to feature special musical guest Wiley Collegiate A Capella Choir of Marshall, TX – 8 a.m., 10 a.m. and 11:30 a.m.
In case you need didn’t know, Maundy comes from a latin word meaning “command” or “mandate,” and the day is called Maundy Thursday because on the night before Jesus’ death, during the Last Supper, he gave his disciples a new command. That is “to love one another; just as I have loved you, you are also to love one another.” (John 13:34)
Other Maundy Thursday details:
- Thursday night church services. Maundy services are traditionally solemn observances, unlike Easter Sunday, which tends to be celebratory. The services are typically held in the evening, as the Last Supper was said to take place at sundown.
- The Eucharist. The Eucharist is a Christian rite meant to symbolize the Last Supper. It involves eating bread and drinking wine, which symbolize the body and blood of Jesus, respectively.
- Feet washing. The religious rite of washing feet was described in the Bible as a symbolic gesture of breaking social barriers between the religious elite and the poor. “If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet,” Jesus told his disciples as recounted in the book of John. “For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you.”
- Visiting seven churches. The tradition of visiting seven churches on Maundy Thursday to pray is practiced most notably in the Philippines and Latin America. The practice is thought to have originated in ancient Rome when religious followers visited Rome’s seven basilicas.
- Alms giving. In the U.K., the giving of “alms,” which comes from the Greek word for pity, is traditionally practiced by the monarch and involves offering coins to the elderly.