NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Christians are marking Holy Thursday as they head into the final days before Easter.
Holy Thursday commemorates the last supper, when Jesus celebrated his last meal before being betrayed and crucified. It is always celebrated on the Thursday before Easter Sunday.
“Every time we come together for the Mass it’s as if we’re there at the last supper with him again,” Cardinal Timothy Dolan said.
To mark Holy Thursday, Dolan met in the morning with staff members and volunteers at Washington Heights Ecumenical Food Pantry before helping to distribute food to at least 200 people.
As CBS2’s Scott Rapoport, Dolan humbly washed the feet of some of those gathered at the pre-Easter ritual.
It’s a day of deep meaning and reflection for the faithful.
“These are the high holy days of the Catholic Church. The Christian faith. Jesus’ celebration of his last day with the apostles leading to his death and resurrection,” Phil Corsello said.
The Cardinal spoke about the significance and the message of Holy Thursday.
“It’s got a great meaning because he gives us that good example of love and humble service,” Dolan said.
Pope Francis celebrated Holy Thursday Mass in St. Peters Basillica. He blessed the oils that will be used in the sacraments of Rome’s parishes throughout the year.
Speaking to priests from Rome, the pope said that he thinks often about the weariness of priests and that he prays about it when he is tired himself.