Holy Week

Week is here. The holiest period of the church year is almost upon us, and the staff has developed new ways for us to worship together. These liturgies move us through the final week of Jesus’ life and culminate in the celebration of resurrection at Easter.

Each day of the Triduum – the “Three Great Days” – has its liturgy. We move together through the story day by day, and even hour by hour, giving our full attention to the unfolding drama of grief that concludes with shattering joy.

Bulletins for all liturgies can be found on the home page of our website, www.stpauls.org . Please plan to participate in these services and make a few simple advance preparations as noted.

Here’s a description of each day’s services:

April 9: Maundy Thursday

We have two different stories in the Gospels about this day: in the Gospel of John, Jesus’ last meal with his disciples includes his “new commandment”: love one another. The central action of John’s story is Jesus’ washing of his disciples’ feet. The other Gospels tell the story of Jesus adding a personal note to the liturgy of the Passover, telling his disciples to remember him in bread and wine.

  • 8:00 a.m. Morning Prayer, Facebook Live HERE (bulletin on the home page) with The Rev. Deacon Laura Siriani
  • 5:00 p.m. A liturgical introduction to the Maundy Thursday meal at your house on Facebook Live HERE (bulletin on the homepage)

The evening liturgy is meant to precede/coincide with the evening meal. Consider the possibility of a well-set table, candles, flowers, and a meal that has room in it for bread and wine, or some other celebratory beverage.

Things to gather/plan for:

  • Readers for the lessons
  • Place a large candle in the center of your table
  • Hand washing – family members can line up at the sink, or perhaps wash one another’s hands.

April 10: Good Friday

  • 8:00 a.m. Morning Prayer, Facebook Live HERE (bulletin on the homepage) with The Rev. Deacon Laura Siriani
  • 12:00 Noon Good Friday Prayers, Facebook Live HERE (bulletin on the homepage) with The Rev. Kay Sylvester & Cynthia Case With the cross as our focus, we gather for readings, singing, and prayers to remember the day when Jesus died. It is the long custom of the Church to pray of Good Friday for the whole world, and the many ways in which Christ is still crucified.
  • 5:00 p.m. Evening Prayer, Facebook Live HERE (bulletin on the homepage)  with Rev. Dr. Rebecca Prichard

April 11: Holy Saturday

  • 7:30 p.m. The Great Vigil of Easter, (Video on our website home page - avail. 5/11, and on Facebook).     This service is the most important and beautiful of all the services of the church year. Known in the early church as “The Queen of Feasts”, the Vigil service begins with new fire, from which we light the new Paschal candle, which will burn throughout the Great Fifty Days of Easter as a sign of the light of the resurrected Christ. We hear the foundational stories of our faith in the darkness, and bless new baptismal water as we renew our baptismal vows. This year, our Great Vigil will be a film that incorporates, in an abbreviated fashion, the music, prayers, and readings that are traditionally a part of the first Easter service. Though it’s a film, I hope you will plan to renew your baptismal vows, and sprinkle each other with water at the appropriate time! We will close with a message from our rector, The Rev. Kay Sylvester.

April 12: Easter Sunday

  • 8:15 a.m. - Easter at the National Cathedral (www.cathedral.org)
  • Please consider joining Episcopalians from around the country and the world for a live-streamed service from the National Cathedral in Washington at 8:15 our time. The live-stream is archived if you want to watch it later in the day. Our Presiding Bishop, The Most Rev. Michael Curry, will be the preacher, and I promise you won’t want to miss it!
  • 9:30 a.m. - Church School HERE
  • 2:00 p.m. - Gospel Chat with the Rev. Kay Sylvester HERE