Wendy Cleary, Gift Aid co-ordinator at the Archdiocese of Birmingham, has today presented St Chad’s Cathedral with a special gift of Maundy Money.

Wendy was presented with the Maundy money by His Majesty King Charles III at today’s Maundy Service at York Minster Cathedral.

Wendy, 80, was nominated to receive the gift by Archbishop Bernard Longley for her contribution to the work and life of the diocese and she has decided to permanently loan the Maundy money to St Chad’s Cathedral.

Wendy, a parishioner at Holy Cross and SS Peter and Paul in Lichfield, said:

“I’m only one of many people who work for their parishes and the diocese on a voluntary basis.

“Because this is so significant historically, with St Chad’s being the first Catholic cathedral to be built after the Reformation, I think that the coins should be kept there as part of the history of St Chad’s.

“I want them to be where anybody can see them and understand their significance.”

Mgr Tim Menezes, Dean of St Chad’s Cathedral said:

“The Cathedral is very honoured to share in this moment of history. We congratulate Wendy on being nominated as a recipient of the Maundy Money in the first year of the King’s reign and welcome it being part of the heritage kept at the cathedral to be enjoyed by future generations.”

The Maundy Money Tradition

Every Maundy Thursday, The Monarch distributes special Maundy money to pensioners.

During the service, the King presents each recipient with two purses: one red and one white. The white purse contains a set of specially minted silver Maundy coins equivalent in value to the age of the Monarch (74).

The red purse contains two commemorative coins, symbolising the Sovereign's historic gift of food and clothing. This year, one celebrates His Majesty’s forthcoming 75th birthday and the other commemorates the 75th anniversary of the Windrush Generation.

At today’s service the King presented 74 men and 74 women with the Maundy gift and thanked them for their Christian service and their help in local communities.

The service dates back to 600AD and these special coins have kept much the same form since 1670.

Maundy Thursday opens the celebration of the Triduum. This Mass celebrates the last meal Jesus shared with his twelve apostles before his death. After the homily we imitate Jesus in the washing of feet. This ritual reminds us that our baptismal commitment means we are to be servants to each other.