Religion

A holy weekend for 2 faiths begins with Christian commemoration of Jesus' Last Supper

A time to serve and be served

Priests and lay servers at St. Peter Catholic Church in uptown Charlotte, NC, follow Christ's model of service by washing the feet of parishioners in the Holy Thursday service on March 29.
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Priests and lay servers at St. Peter Catholic Church in uptown Charlotte, NC, follow Christ's model of service by washing the feet of parishioners in the Holy Thursday service on March 29.

This is the holiest of weekends for Christians as well as the start of Passover, a major holiday for Jews.

On Holy Thursday, or Maundy Thursday, Christians remember Jesus' Last Supper with his disciples. At churches such as St. Peter Catholic in uptown Charlotte, priests and lay servers imitated Christ by washing parishioners' feet and dispensing the Eucharist.

On Good Friday, Christians will mark Jesus' death by crucifixion.

And on Easter Sunday, the most important day on the Christian calendar, church bells will ring and choirs will sing "He is risen!' as Protestants and Catholics celebrate Jesus' resurrection.

Orthodox Christians, who follow a different calendar, will celebrate Easter, or Pascha, on April 8 this year.

At sundown Friday, Jews will usher in Passover, or Pesach, an eight-day festival that commemorates the Israelites' freedom from slavery in ancient Egypt. Jewish families mark this event with a ritual meal called a Seder.

Passover this year will end at sundown April 7.

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On Maundy Thursday, Christians remember Jesus' Last Supper with his apostles. At St. Peter Catholic Church in uptown Charlotte, NC, priests and lay servers washed parishioners' feet, as Jesus did for his disciples, and dispensed the Eucharist, which was introduced at that last meal. Jeff Siner jsiner@charlotteobserver.com

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At St. Peter Catholic Church in uptown Charlotte, NC, priests and lay servers on Maundy Thursday imitate Christ by washing parishioners’ feet, as Jesus did for his disciples. Jeff Siner jsiner@charlotteobserver.com

Tim Funk: 704-358-5703, @timfunk
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