For us to be made new
Holy Week is a very special time during the last week of Lent in which the specific events of the Passion are singled out and emphasized. Personally, and liturgically, we travel the spiritual road from sublime fulfillment, through pain and loss, to absolute victory and fulfillment.
The services of Holy Week coincide as closely as possible with the events of Jesus’ last days, and the great spiritual importance that the anticipation of that final washing of the Lenten ash imposed some forty days ago. These are among the most important saving events that God had brought to pass through his Son and our Savior, Jesus Christ.
This week of worship begins with Palm Sunday: when Jesus entered Jerusalem amidst a huge demonstration of support by the common people. Many thought he was going to declare himself a Messiah in the tradition of the conquering Maccabees, who had once temporarily restored the glory of the Jewish nation until it was conquered by the Romans in 63 B.C. But, the triumphant entry was an ironic celebration as many of those who were hailed as King this day would demand his death just five days later.
Holy Week observances continue with Stations of the Cross on Wednesday night, Maundy Thursday, and Good Friday. In the past, we have held a vibrant Holy Saturday gathering for the children in our area. This year, we will observe a Holy quiet Saturday: a time to stop in the eye of the storm. Holy Week delivers us to Easter Sunday when we gather for a Festal Eucharist proclaiming Jesus’ resurrection and our salvation.
The services of Holy Week are the heart of our corporate observance. However, each day is an opportunity for us to individually reflect personally on the Passion of our Lord:
Each year we gather during this special week of observance to immerse ourselves in the truth of sacrifice and the example of supreme love. The church has provided this time for us to receive this love and to accept this sacrifice anew, with open hearts and wanting spirits.
Come. Come to God in the spirit. Use what the church has provided and accept Christ as He is. Together our love for each other, in the light of His love for us, can break the bonds that hold us and set us free to accept the saving grace of God.
Faithfully in Christ,
Father Bill Burk†