Leccionario en Español, Leccionario Común Revisado: Consulta Sobre Textos Comunes.
Lectionnaire en français, Le Lectionnaire Œcuménique Révisé
The most intense week in the Christian year begins today.
The color may change today from purple to red. Red continues to be used through Holy Thursday/Maundy Thursday.
Starting with Good Friday and until the first service of Easter you celebrate, there should be no color. It is customary to “strip the sanctuary” immediately following or just before the sending from the Holy Thursday/Maundy Thursday service, removing not only all paraments, but all other adornments from the worship space. This includes all altarware, banners, flowers, candles, and any items on the Lord’s Table. If there is a permanent cross on the walls, it is customarily covered (not merely draped), typically in black. So are processional crosses if you intend to use them during this time.
For Your Planning Team: Holy Week — Through Death to Life
In This Series
Holy Week begins now.
This is the most intense week in the Christian year. It confronts us with the violence we inflict upon one another and our faithlessness toward God, juxtaposed dramatically against the love of God and the hope God’s kingdom offers our world.
Additional resources from our colleagues Scott Hughes and Melanie Gordon support the journey of this week day by day with whomever you gather, whether family at home, friends at school or work, or just you before God with the Scriptures for each day. Your Lenten formational groups may wish to use these resources as part of a daily gathering, whether in person or online if in-person meetings are not possible for you.
We hear and feel the juxtaposition of violence, love, and hope dramatically in the contrast between the processions that begin and end this service.
We begin with Jesus’ procession into Jerusalem, met with both joyous expectation by some, and curious or hostile wonder by others. We conclude with the reading of Matthew’s account of Jesus’ procession to his place of execution and what unfolds there.
Likewise, musically, we begin with upbeat singing at the processional into the worship space, move toward meditation on the cross at Communion, and conclude with a silent dismissal. We recommend that musical instruments be used more sparingly from now until your first Easter service, whether the Great Vigil, Easter Sunrise, or Easter morning.
This service has a lot of moving parts, especially at the beginning and end. Take time to rehearse especially the opening processional logistics in both places they may originate-- whether outdoors or at an alternate indoor location. Figure out where leaders need to stand and how the flow of people will work. Consider affixing markers on the ground or in the hallway to identify where specific leaders will begin and stop midway (especially pastor and lay leader).
As you determine where to begin the procession, be mindful of sound and accessibility. If you do not have adequate provision for sound amplification outdoors, be sure the pastor and lay leader are prepared to project well. People with significant mobility challenges may be invited to go directly to the worship space, if needed, bypassing the opening processional. If you have a way for these people still to see and hear the processional (a good use for Skype or Facetime or similar person-to-person video connections), be sure to provide it, either individually, or to screens if you have them. We do not recommend Facebook Live or other public streaming apps unless you have licensing to allow the streaming of any and all copyrighted content (songs or liturgical texts) you may be streaming.
Ecumenical Prayer Cycle: East Timor, Indonesia, Philippines