Holy Week Traditions

Jude Missa

The Holy Week is the last part of the Lenten Season, which starts on Palm Sunday and ends on Black Saturday. It is called Holy Week because it focuses on the life, passion and death of our Lord Jesus Christ. The last tree days of the Holy Week is called Sacred Tridum. During Sacred Tridum, there are traditions that Catholics do as an act of penance.


Maundy Thursday is where we remember the Last Supper, the first Holy Mass in the world. The word Maundy is from the latn word “Mandatum” which means “command”. On the Last Supper, our Lord Jesus Christ gave a new command to His Apostles:

“A new commandment I give unto you: That you love one another, as I have loved you, that you also love one another.”
John 13:34

The first mass on Maundy Thursday is called Chism Mass, where the oil was blessed. This oil will be used on the Sacrament of Baptism, Confirmation and Anointing of the Sick. Then in the afternoon, there will be a “washing of feet” on 12 people by the Priest. In tradition, only 12 men is allowed to be wash. This is a remembrance where our Lord wash the feet of His 12 Apostles. This is symbolized love and humility.
There is also a tradition of visiting seven churches during Maundy Thursday, it was called “Visita Iglesia”. This tradition was started on 1553 by St. Philip Neri in Rome where they visit the seven basilicas in Rome. There is also reading or singing the Passion of Christ, the Station of the Cross and the dramatization of the Passion of our Lord.


Good Friday is the day where we remember the death of our Lord Jesus Christ at the cross. One of the main traditions during Good Friday is the “Holy Burial”, where there will be a procession of the image of the dead body of our Lord together with the images of Saints. But in the end of the procession is the Image of Mater Dolorosa (Sorrowful Mother/Our Lady of Sorrows).


Holy Saturday is where we also remember the death of our Lord. The images in the church will remain in cover and no activities in the church as mourning the death of our Lord Jesus Christ.


After Sacred Tridum, comes the Easter Sunday. Where the church celebrates the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ by celebrating a special or High Mass to thank our Lord when He redeemed the whole world.

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