For the Christian world, Maundy Thursday ushered in the Paschal Triduum, the three days ending with Lent and leading to Resurrection Sunday (Easter).

The term may be familiar to Protestant denominations like Lutheran, Methodist, and Reformed as well as Anglican churches that observe Lent.

Other denominations may or may not be familiar with the term.

In our Methodist Church, the Triduum is called “the Great Three Days,” and on each day except Saturday, there are church services.

Maundy Thursday services remind us of Jesus’ command (to love one another) as He washed His disciples’ feet and shared The Last Supper with them. This service concludes with the Stripping of the Altar as the church readies itself for Good Friday.

Good Friday services can include a Fish Fry after the meal, the congregation gathers in a “bare” church setting to reflect on Christ’s Passion and His time on the Cross with songs, readings, and prayer. Church members leave in silence preparing to return on Easter morning in anticipation and celebration of His resurrection.

Holy Saturday or Black Saturday is a day for silence, fasting, and quiet contemplation focusing on personal spiritual journeys while remembering Jesus’ crucifixion. Holy Saturday falls as the Jewish Sabbath before Jesus’ Resurrection for those of Jewish faith.

Roman Catholics have celebrated the Paschal/Easter Triduum as a formal separate season since 1955. Many Catholic churches hold an Easter Vigil through Saturday night.

This season leading to Resurrection Sunday is the holiest time of the year for Christians. Participation in Paschal Triduum activities can enhance the season but is not required.

The important thing is having a thankful heart for what Easter represents. Without what He did on the cross, we would be forever lost.

May you have a most Blessed Easter.