Last week we celebrated the Paschal Triduum – the most holy week of the Christian year. It was a busy week in the life of the church with services every weeknight as we journeyed to Jerusalem, the cross and then celebrated the chaos and eventual joy of the empty tomb. So much work goes into this particular week! Bulletins for all of the services. Lots of musical preparation. Altar color changes along with a variety of work to set up and clean up each service. More services means more liturgical support folks serving.
Thank you to so many who took on a lot of extra duties to help us all to celebrate well. Liz, for all of your support work in preparing bulletins. All the volunteers who came and folded extra bulletins. Readers, Eucharistic Ministers and Intercessors for taking on extra responsibilities. Marlene and the choir for a lot of extra preparation. Kris for all that you did to help our Holy Week at home be such a success as we folded crosses, colored Lenten posters and made Holy Week in a box. Kris’s work didn’t end there either. She helped us to find the Alleluia’s and then laminated them hanging them on one of our Lenten Narnia trees. Those who took on cleaning and tidying up responsibilities. And every one who gathered to worship at all or some of the Holy Week and Paschal Triduum (The Great Three Days of Easter) celebrations.
What a joy to spend this first Holy Week with all of you! What a holy experience it was for me. Every year I take away snapshots of various liturgies that strike me in a particularly powerful way.
Monday’s Taize service provided a quiet moment to reflect on the power of all that happened as Jesus turned his face to Jerusalem. Tuesday, as we reflected on all of the symbols of Easter, I will forever remember a video in my mind of one worship attender picking up the large Good Friday cross and processing it into VandenBergh Hall and then returning it to its stand. The “gong” that accompanied the darkness of the Tenebrae service will echo in my head for some time I think. On Maundy Thursday two folks who washed one another’s feet lightly touched the other’s head in a wonderful, personally powerful moment. On Good Friday one young parishioner knelt at the foot of the cross for a time of personal prayer and after leaving that sacred spot returned to hug the cross. Sunday’s vigil was amazing as the fire leapt to light and as Bill McDonald canted the Exultet. Magic happened when the Hall was somehow transformed to a dining room as a most excellent brunch was laid out for all. Sunday’s service was gloriously uplifting as we celebrated the chaos and confusion of the empty tomb.
These, and so many more moments, stand out for me as particularly holy moments. Moments that provide a glimpse into the very real presence of God and how each of us responds differently. Moments that help me to see the face of God in a new way.
What were your Holy Moments? What did they reveal about God and/or God’s presence? Head on over to the blog on the website to share your memories….