Holy Week 2014

Holy Week is a week like no other.  The Sundays at either end of it celebrate (arguably) the two most amazing events in history: the death of Jesus and the resurrection of Jesus.  The implications of that sequence of Gospel events are endless: there’s always something new to learn from them, there’s always a fresh churn of emotions to experience from them, there’s always so much that we are called to do in light of them.  While most events and commemorations are usually summed up in a day, the passion and death of our Lord takes a whole week to process before we move on to Sunday.

In our culture rife with fierce individualism mixed with the unceasing seesaw between being workaholics or lazy, it can be very difficult to see “going to church” as anything more than a Sunday affair.  But the Church Calendar refutes this, saying “no, you cannot come to worship only on Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday and expect to appreciate the whole story.  You need to invest in this.”  And so we have the great and ancient tradition of Holy Week, where we walk through the Gospel events in real time, from the triumphal entry to the death and finally the resurrection of Christ.

By gathering to worship each day of the week we’re simply hitting “repeat” on the passion & death narratives of Christ, seeking to see it from as many different angles as possible.  Towards the end, especially, we’re repeating the story in slow motion: the last supper and Jesus’ arrest, the trial, suffering and death, and his repose in the tomb, until he rises again.

At Grace Anglican Church this year we’re aiming to have our first full and proper Holy Week: not just one extra worship service somewhere in the week, but one every day through the week.  Everyone has busy lives, and not everyone can come to all of them. But most people should be able to make it to some of them; Christ’s sacrifice is too big to process in just a day.

The power of a crucifix is not appreciated in a glance; neither is Holy Week appreciated in a day!

Our schedule of public worship is as follows:

  • Palm Sunday: 10:30am @ Leominster (focusing on Matthew 27:1-54)
  • Monday in Holy Week: 6:00pm @ Fitchburg (focusing on Mark 14:1-72)
  • Tuesday in Holy Week: 6:00pm @ Fitchburg (focusing on Mark 15:1-39
  • Wednesday in Holy Week: 7:00pm @ Athol (focusing on Luke 22:1-71)
  • Maundy Thursday: 6:00pm @ Leominster (focusing on Luke 23:1-49)
  • Good Friday: 6:00pm @ Fitchburg (focusing on John 19:1-37)
  • Holy Saturday: 12:00pm @ Fitchburg (focusing on Matthew 27:57-66)
  • Easter Sunday: 10:30am @ Leominster (focusing on John 20:1-10)

The Leominster location is 80 Erdman Way, the Fitchburg location is 360 Marshall Road, and the Athol location is 130 Batchelder Street.  All are welcome to join us!

About Fr. Brench

I'm an Anglican Priest and a sci-fi geek. Therefore, I write about liturgy & spiritual formation, theology & biblical studies, and Doctor Who. But I keep those blogs separate so I don't confuse too many people!
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