Holy Week 2013
The events of Holy Week recount central acts in the life story of
Jesus. Beginning with Passion Sunday/Palm Sunday the focus of tne Christian community follows Jesus from exaltation through a parade of palms to humiliation - the way of the cross - and Easter. Life, death, and new life - resurrection are the critical emphasis as we move in our procession to the Great Three Days - Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and the Vigil of Easter (Holy Saturday)-Easter Sunday.
The worship life of the Great Three Days is conceptually one continuous celebration.
On Holy Thursday we remember Jesus giving of a new command: to love as he has loved; the giving of communion as Jesus invokes his disciples to remember and celebrate his presence by sharing - bread and wine - remembering his life; and through radical hospitality, taking the duty of a servant, washing his disciple's feet and urging them also to carry out this practice.
On Good Friday, we hear the Passion of Jesus proclaimed, once again. This time using John's gospel instead of the synoptics. Worship this day consists of song, prayers, readings, solemn intercessions and adoration of the cross.
On Holy Saturday evening we begin the celebration of the Great Festival of Easter - the principle feast of the Christian calendar year. A bonfire is struck (outside the usual gathering place) - the Great Fire - the Paschal candle is lit and readings "around the fire" are shared as the great stories of the Judeo-Christian tradition are read. We move from the sharing of stories "around the fire" to the affirmation of promises made at our baptisms - our blessing and being washed in the waters of life. We will process from the fountain into the sanctuary led by the Paschal candle as our service culminates in the sharing of the Easter gospel and the first communion of Easter.