Holy Monday is observed annually on April 3 this year. It commemorates Jesus’s life, faith, and the events leading up to his death and eventual resurrection. According to the Bible, Holy Monday is the day after Jesus was greeted with palm leaves and the day before Judas decided to betray him.
For Christians, the holiday is the beginning of the Holy Week preparation, which includes reading the Bible and reflecting on the Scripture. For others, it’s the time to get a much-deserved break.
History of Holy Monday
The origin of Holy Monday can be traced back to when Lent was founded. During the third century, only Good Friday and Holy Saturday were observed and considered holy days. Later on, Holy Wednesday was added to the observance as this was the day when Judas betrayed Jesus. In the fourth century, the term “Holy Week” was first used by St. Athanasius, bishop of Alexandria, and St. Epiphanius of Constantia, bringing the holiday into existence. It now included the rest of the weekdays: Palm Sunday, Holy Monday, Holy Tuesday, and Easter Sunday.
It was on Holy Monday when Jesus Christ walked to Jerusalem from Bethany. During his journey, he saw a fruitless fig tree. He cast a curse on this tree until it withered and bore fruits. He immediately told his disciples that if they had enough faith, they could make the tree wither and even make the mountains move. On this day, he also cleaned the temple and responded to the authorities for his questioning. The key verses in the Bible that established Holy Monday were Matthew 21:19 to 22, Mark 11:20 to 25, Matthew 21:20 to 22, and Mark 11:23, detailing the actions mentioned above.
Notable changes in the Holy Week celebration occurred in history. On November 16, 1955, observances in the Roman Missal were revised by the decree known as ‘Maxima Redemptoris.’ It restored the services in the Scripture by the exact time and day. As a result, the liturgies used now by Catholics, Anglicans, Methodists, Lutherans, and Presbyterians are almost identical.
Holy Monday timeline
The church establishes Good Friday and Holy Saturday.
The Holy Week comprises Palm Sunday, Holy Monday, Holy Tuesday, Holy Wednesday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Black Saturday, and Easter Sunday.
The Moravians establish an extensive celebration of the Holy Week, naming it “Passion Week.”
The ‘Maxima Redemptoris’ revises the observances made during the Holy Week on November 16.
Holy Monday FAQs
Is Holy Monday different from Easter Monday?
Yes, Holy Monday is the day after Palm Sunday, while Easter Monday is the day after Easter Sunday.
Are businesses and establishments closed during Holy Monday?
Most schools, businesses, offices, and commercial establishments stop operations on Good Friday.
When is the eastern date for Holy Monday in 2022?
The Eastern date for Holy Monday is April 18, 2022.
How to Observe Holy Monday
Keep a fast
A traditional way of celebrating Holy Monday is through fasting. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean abstaining from eating altogether. You may cut a small portion of your meal as a sacrifice.
Abstain from social media
Most people love to enjoy a serene and peaceful Holy Monday. So, a modern sacrifice you can make is to abstain from social media. Turn off your phone and mingle with your family at home.
Read the Bible
Most Catholics and Christians use Holy Monday to read the Bible. You can do this individually or with a group of people.
5 Interesting Facts About Holy Monday
There are different dates
Holy Monday is observed on two completely different dates depending on which school of Christianity — Eastern or Western — you follow.
A global holiday
Holy Monday is one of the most observed holidays around the world.
The Great and Holy Monday
In honor of the miracles performed by Jesus, some countries refer to the holiday as the “Great and Holy Monday.”
Fig tree symbolism
The fig tree symbolizes that the power of faith is stronger than outward religiosity.
A temple of corrupt money changers
Jesus cleared the temple on Holy Monday because it was a den of thieves.
Why Holy Monday is Important
It’s a time to reflect
Holy Monday is a day for everyone to reflect and move forward. It’s the time of the year to check your mental and spiritual health.
It’s a long weekend with family
For most people, Holy Monday is just the kick-off to a long weekend. Families use the holiday to stay at home, spend time together, cook food, and bond with each other.
It reinvigorates your faith
For Christians and Catholics, Holy Monday is the time of the year to be reminded of the power of strong faith. It helps people hold on to their religious beliefs and realize the power of prayer.
Holy Monday dates