2017 Calendar and Guide to the Liturgies of Holy Week and Easter
Posted on the 9th Apr 2017 in the category Wedding Video


HOLY CROSS CHURCH

CROMER  STREET,  WC1H 8JU.

“The Church in the Heart of King’s Cross”

 

HOLY WEEK AND EASTER CALENDAR AND GUIDE 2017


 
  PALM SUNDAY (9th APRIL)


 

11 am PARISH MASS WITH BLESSING OF PALMS, PROCESSION AND READING OF THE PASSION GOSPEL.

 

On this day we re-enact Jesus' entry into Jerusalem as we process around the outside of the church  carrying palm crosses which have been blessed. We then make our way back into church is now become our Jerusalem. Though Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem is found in scripture as a 'triumphal' entry, it contains elements which are also contradictory. He enters not as a King but as a servant. He rides not in a chariot but on an ass. He is greeted as a king but comes as a pauper and as a victim of circumstance. This ‘little’ triumph will soon be cut short, for the procession takes Jesus (and us) into Jerusalem as the place of trial, betrayal and death. God sets before us what kind of Saviour Jesus is to be and what kind of salvation is being worked out.

 

MONDAY, TUESDAY AND WEDNESDAY IN HOLY WEEK

MONDAY 10th, TUESDAY 11th AND WEDNESDAY 12th APRIL.

 

6 pm         MASS

6 30 pm    STATIONS OF THE CROSS

 

STATIONS OF THE CROSS

In the medieval period many Christians thought to make a pilgrimage to Jerusalem to see for themselves where the events of the life of Christ had taken place and to go and witness them at first hand. A pilgrimage to The Holy Land imparted special blessing. But the realities of making such a pilgrimage in those days far outweighed its likelihood. There was the personal cost and the high probability that you might be attacked or even killed along the way. Such a journey might take you away from your home for many years. Some pilgrims did make the journey successfully and they came back home to 'tell the tale'. This would have been seen as stupendous in those days; a small miracle. Many wished to make a spiritual pilgrimage in heart and in mind and to follow Jesus on his way of sorrows, his 'Way of the Cross'. ‘The Stations of the Cross' grew out of this desire. It could be done in churches! As the name suggests these are 'stations' or stopping off points along the road that Jesus took to his death on the Cross. We are introduced to the people that Jesus meets along the way and the pain and suffering that he underwent. At each Station in this church we stop and meditate and offer prayers and supplications, and sing appropriate Passiontide hymns. This is a very moving act of witness.

 

MAUNDY THURSDAY (13TH APRIL)

 

RENEWAL OF VOWS, BLESSING OF HOLY OILS AND HOLY COMMUNION AT

ST PAUL'S CATHEDRAL AT 10 30 AM.

 

This is a grand liturgy at St Paul’s Cathedral which celebrates the Last Supper and the words of command as Jesus breaks the bread and gives the wine: "Do this in remembrance of Me". This is truly a celebration but it also points to Jesus as a servant. The clergy of the Diocese of London gather here to renew their vows. The preacher and celebrant this year is the acting Bishop of London. The liturgy takes up the theme of service, and the Bishop blesses holy oils which are distributed to the parishes for the Church’s ministry of healing. The Bishop addresses the clergy and encourages them and all the faithful in the Christian ministry to which we are all called.

 

8 pm  MASS OF THE LORD'S SUPPER, WASHING OF FEET, PROCESSION OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT STRIPPING OF THE CHURCH, AND WATCH  UNTIL MIDNIGHT AT HOLY CROSS.

 

MAUNDY THURSDAY speaks of the climactic events of the Passion. It is set at first within the confines of the 'upper room', a place which has been designated for The Last Supper. It is at this meal that Jesus tells us more about why he has been sent by God. Before the meal begins he washes the disciples’ feet. This is to show that he has come as a servant. And the message this action contains is that our true humanity is realised as we reach out beyond ourselves to find ourselves in the service of others. This is for the emptying of ourselves; of becoming like Christ. The mystery is that we meet ourselves and find healing for our lives as we reach out and find one another in one another. The priest in this Maundy Thursday Liturgy washes the feet of certain members of the congregation. The Last Supper is commemorated in the Maundy Thursday Liturgy as a celebration of what Christ gives us in his body and blood. His is the sacrifice of himself which is also his gift to us. "This is my body. This is my blood, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me".

 

The Supper does not end there. We know that Jesus is soon to be betrayed by one of the disciples, Judas, and that the events which will lead to his arrest are already in place. The Church is stripped of all its ornaments as a sign of the darkness into which Jesus and we ourselves are being lead. The liturgy falls into a watch until midnight, which re-creates in the church the Garden of Gethsemane, and Jesus' agony and his waking of the sleeping disciples: "Could you not watch with me one hour?" We watch with the sacrament and wait in its presence as the disciples watched and waited with Christ. At midnight the watch ends abruptly and we leave the church in darkness, emptiness and silence. The flickering candlelight which sits alongside the sacrament has been blown out. It is in this way that the Church makes us ready for the shattering events of Good Friday.

 

GOOD FRIDAY  (14th APRIL)                                

 

9 30 am GOOD FRIDAY ECUMENICAL WALK OF WITNESS FOLLOWING THE WAY OF THE CROSS AROUND KING'S CROSS CHURCHES.  

 

We gather at St Pancras Church, Euston Road and make the Way of the Cross around the King’s Cross Churches, carrying a cross and stopping at intervals to offer meditations upon the Cross, hymns, prayers and intercessions. We end our walk at King’s Cross Methodist Church where tea and hot cross buns are served.

 

3 pm GOOD FRIDAY LITURGY AT HOLY CROSS CHURCH.

 

GOOD FRIDAY is the day in which the Christian Church commemorates the trial, the suffering and the death of Christ on the Cross. The church is bare of all ornaments, having been stripped the night before. Silence forms a large part of the Good Friday Liturgy, and its theme is the Cross. The Passion Gospel which relates to Jesus' suffering and death is read in its entirety, or rather re-enacted. This is a protracted and dramatic reading, with all the members of the congregation taking the part of the crowd and with individual parts being taken by others, with a narrator to guide us. A Good Friday sermon follows. We then come to 'The Proclamation of the Cross' in which a cross is brought into the church and carefully unveiled. It is then venerated. What follows is a series of reproaches, after which a simple celebration of Holy Communion takes place. The service concludes with The Lord's Prayer and the congregation to leave the church in SILENCE. The Good Friday Liturgy provides a stark contrast to most other Christian services in its emphasis upon the starkness of Jesus death on the Cross and the way in which it moves us to profound contemplation and then to silent devotion without embellishments. The silences allow the liturgy of Good Friday to speak directly.

 

HOLY SATURDAY (April 15th)

 

8 pm EASTER VIGIL, LIGHTING OF THE EASTER CANDLE, RENEWAL OF BAPTISM VOWS AND SOLEMN MASS OF EASTER

 

During Saturday the church furnishings are replaced and the statues uncovered. The church is filled with flowers and the altar hangings are of white and gold. All this remains hidden in the cover of evening darkness as the Easter Vigil begins outside the church. The Easter Candle, representing Christ the Light of the World, is lit from a brazier. The candle is then taken into procession into the darkened church as the first light of Easter. The people light their own candles from the Easter Candle, and there follows the singing of the Exsultet by the Priest and then a vigil of Bible readings in semi-darkness which recall the saving events in the Bible leading up to the coming of Christ. The vigil ends in a blaze of sound and light; the Gloria is sung and bells are rung as the Resurrection is joyfully proclaimed. This is followed by the Blessing of the Easter Water and the Renewal of Baptism Vows. The Liturgy of the Eucharist then follows. The Easter Vigil is very beautiful and it allows us to see the Resurrection of Christ as the coming of light into a darkened world. It provides a sudden and glorious Easter joy, which is all the more evident as the climax of the solemn Holy Week liturgies is sounded. Easter has finally come and the cry of the faithful  is  “Alleluya! Alleluya! Alleluya!”

 

EASTER DAY (April 16th)

 

11 am MASS OF THE RESURRECTION OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST FROM THE DEAD. FOLLOWED BY BUBBLY AND EASTER EGGS.

 

ALLELUYA! CHRIST IS RISEN!


 
   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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