On Maundy Thursday, April 13th 2017, the Royal Maundy Service, at which Maundy Money is distributed by Her Majesty The Queen, will be held in Leicester Cathedral.

The Service, an occasion rich in tradition and history, will take place at 11.00am. Maundy Money will be distributed by Her Majesty to 91 men and 91 women from across the city and county, who are on or over the age of 70 and who have given long Christian service to Church or community.

This Service has been hosted in all Cathedrals across the country during the Queen’s reign, apart from Leicester Cathedral – we are the last one to host it!

Canon Alison Adams, Sub-Dean, says, “Her Majesty The Queen visited us at the start of her Diamond Jubilee celebrations and we are proud to welcome her back. This will be a great celebration of faithful service to the community from both the City and County of Leicester.”

Below you can read updates from Canon Alison as we get closer to Maundy Thursday. These posts will be updated regularly.

Preparing for Royal Maundy  28 days to go!

Royal Maundy 1877 (Woodcut by C. Roberts)

Well it won’t look quite look like this in Leicester on April 13th! But the occasion and its ceremonies are very much steeped in tradition.

The special coins which the recipients are given, have remained much the samesince 1670. Prior to this, ordinary coinage was used. They are, perhaps surprisingly, legal tender, although it is unlikely that one would wish to spend them as such. From the reign of Henry IV, the number of recipients has been determined by the sovereign’s age – our Queen is 91 – hence 91 men and 91 women will be in receipt of Maundy purses. The ceremony’s origin lies in the commandment Christ gave his disciples (‘mandatum’ in Latin – hence ‘Maundy’) – ‘that you love on another’. This was at his Last Supper,  just after he had washed the disciples’ feet, as an example of loving service. In many places the Church commemorates that occasion still today by re-enacting the washing of peoples’ feet on that same day.

The public ceremony has changed over the centuries, with foot washing and the giving of alms replaced with money in lieu together with the special silver Maundy coins. Framed within traditional Christian worship, the Queen will walk around the Cathedral, handing each recipient their gift. These people have been chosen for their service to the Church and their community. It is this theme of service that we wish particularly to celebrate. So the lunch which the Bishop is hosting after the service will be attended by a different group of guests, many of whom represent organisations active locally also in the service of their community. You may remember a book ‘The Servant Queen and the King she serves’ which was produced last year to celebrate the Queen’s 90th birthday. This makes clear the link between not only faith and service, but the Queen’s personal Christian faith and her commitment to serving others. For those who are interested and have not read this, there will be copies available in the Cathedral after Easter.

Alison Adams, Sub-Dean of Leicester Cathedral

See below for previous #RoyalMaundy updates:

Maundy Update 1 – 50 Days to Go!
Maundy Update 2 – The Florist, Rosy Hughes