Holy Week in Quarantine

Friday, April 3, 2020

Dear friends,

This Sunday marks the beginning of the week that sits at the very heart of the Church’s calendar, Holy Week. COVID-19 means this will be an unusual Holy Week for us. However, we can take heart in knowing that it isn’t the first time the Church has had an unusual Holy Week whether due to pestilence, persecution, or war. Easter is coming and nothing can get in the way. I wanted to take a moment to update you regarding our plans for Holy Week this year.

WORSHIP TOGETHER
Our online liturgies for Holy Week will be as follows:

  • Palm Sunday (April 5): 10:30am on the St Paul’s Facebook page. Download the liturgy HERE and pray along.
  • Maundy Thursday (April 9): 7:00pm on the St John’s Facebook page.
  • Good Friday (April 10): 10:30am on the St John’s Facebook page.
  • Easter Sunday (April 12): 10:30am on the St John’s Facebook page.
  • The liturgies for Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday have been pre-recorded (thanks to Adam Coleridge) and include some familiar faces and voices. They also include hymns, because what would Easter Sunday be without ‘Jesus Christ Is Risen Today’? The liturgies for Maundy Thursday and Good Friday are pared down and will be live streamed.

WORSHIP AT HOME
Here are some resources to help you enter more fully into Holy Week at home:

  • HERE is a booklet from Liturgical Press containing liturgies for home. This is not intended to replace the liturgies above when we will all gather together.
  • Holy Week activities for children HERE and HERE.
  • HERE is a link to a series of sermons on the seven last words of Christ from the Cross by the great Episcopalian preacher Fleming Rutledge. Listen to one each day in Holy Week.
  • Start praying the Daily Office at home! HERE is an instructional video and HERE is a booklet of Morning and Evening prayer.
  • Every day during Holy Week I’ll post a reflection on the blog at our website HERE.
  • HERE is a recipe for hot cross buns and HERE is an explanation of their significance.
  • The Great Vigil of Easter (April 11): HERE is an at-home version of the Vigil. A couple of suggestions: 1) Wait until it is dark outside and then light a few candles on the table before turning off the lights. 2) The Vigil is the first liturgy of Easter, it’s time to celebrate the Resurrection of our Lord! Prepare something special and have a party after the liturgy.

I pray that you and your household will be transformed by the Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ this Holy Week as we journey with him through the darkness of death to the joy of the Resurrection.

Yours in Christ,

Jonathan+

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