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Holy Thursday

Holy Thursday

4/1/2010 9:00:00 AM


Holy Thursday is the day when all women are supposed to color the bright Easter eggs for the family gathering on Easter day. Eggs, as symbols of creation and new life, have been exchanged between friends and relatives for hundreds of years now.

The concept of the red egg in the Christian traditional customs has been connected to a legend.

Mary Magdalene, whom Jesus had cured from all the evil spirits within her, was the first one to see Jesus risen from the dead and she went around the world to spread the happy news. She reached Rome and Emperor Tiberiuss palace. According to the tradition, everyone visiting him was supposed to carry some sort of a gift to the Emperor. The rich people were carrying expensive gifts while the poor ones - whatever they could afford.


Mary Magdalene took an egg to Tiberiuss palace and handed it to the Emperor with the following greeting: "Christ has risen from the dead!"

The Emperor could not believe what he heard and responded: "How could anyone ever rise from the dead! It is as impossible as that white egg to turn red right now..." While Tiberius was talking, the color in Mary Magdalenes hands started changing its color until it finally became bright red.

The Easter greeting ever since has remained "Christ has risen from the dead"  and Christians all over the world color eggs in red (as well as in various other colors) for Easter to celebrate their belief in the Resurrection.

In the Christian calendar that day is known as Maundy Thursday, Sheer Thursday, or Holy Thursday, meaning the Thursday before Easter.

It celebrates Jesus's Last Supper before his execution. Traditionally, it is the day when Jesus washed the feet of his disciples and told them to serve others as he served them.

Consequently, in many churches, both Protestant and Roman Catholic, the priest or pastor washes the feet of the congregants on this day. 

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