Message for Holy Week & Easter 2015

by The Rev. Elizabeth Maxwell

“Assist us mercifully with your help, O Lord God of our salvation, that we may enter with joy upon the contemplation of those mighty acts, whereby you have given us life and immortality; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.”

Dear parishioners and friends,

Every year, our liturgy invites us to walk with Jesus step by step through the last week of his life, into the mystery of death and resurrection. Through the mystical drama of worship, we participate in the enthusiasm of the crowd as Jesus enters Jerusalem in triumph, and then feel how quickly adulation turns to violence. We are washed, fed and loved in the tenderness of Jesus’ last supper. We watch with bewildered and breaking hearts as our Lord dies a criminal’s death on the cross. And we wait and wonder as he passes from death to life, to greet us with overwhelming joy on Easter morning.

Every year I notice something different, identify with a different character or part of the story. It may be the woman who loved and anointed Jesus, the frightened disciples, or the dying thief asking for paradise. It depends on where I am in my own journey and what is going on in the world and the larger church. But the arc of the liturgy helps to shape us as Christians, preparing us for the deaths and resurrections in our own lives. It draws us closer in community. It changes us, strengthens us to witness to the risen Lord. When we have walked the whole way of the cross, our experience of Easter is far richer and more joyful.

Our Holy Week and Eater schedule is printed below. I hope you will join the parish community at Ascension for as many of these services as you can- bring your friends! All are most welcome. I very much look forward to sharing this special, sacred time with you. See you in church!

Blessings and peace,

The Rev. Elizabeth G. Maxwell
Rector

holy week picture

The Sunday of the Passion, Palm Sunday, March 29
Blessing and Procession of the Palms
9 a.m. Blessing of Palms
11 a.m. Blessing and Procession of the Palms
A reading of the Passion According to Mark
7 p.m. Meditation and Sacrament

Holy Monday, Holy Tuesday, Holy Wednesday
March 30, 31, April 1st
6 p.m. Holy Eucharist at the Side Altar and Lay Preacher

Maundy Thursday, April 2
7 p.m. Holy Eucharist with Foot Washing
Watch with the Blessed Sacrament
After the evening service, an all-night Vigil before the Reserved Sacrament will be kept in All Saints’ Chapel.

Good Friday, April 3, noon
The Passion and Death of Our Lord Jesus Christ, Veneration of the Cross, Communion from the Reserve Sacrament

Great Vigil of East, Saturday, April 4 at 8 p.m.
Holy Baptism and the First Eucharist of Easter with Choir

Easter Sunday, April 5
9 a.m. Said Eucharist (Side Altar)
11 a.m. Festal Eucharist with Choir (Main Altar)
Easter Egg Hunt for the Children Following the Service
7 p.m. Meditation and Sacrament

Here is a pdf of the complete Holy Week and Easter Schedule 2015.

The music for Palm Sunday is posted on the right sidebar of this page. Music for the remainder of the week will be posted soon.