My dear friends in Christ,
Once again we have arrived at the most i mportant week on the Church's calendar. Holy Week is a time when the Church, in her liturgies, enters into the heart of the Paschal Mystery, where we recall the passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus from the dead.
Holy Week begins on Palm Sunday where we hear in the gospel that Jesus entered into the holy city of Jerusalem to the chants of the crowd "Hosanna, to the son of David". He goes with one purpose in mind which is to willingly lay down his life for the sins of the world. On Wednesday evening, the priests and the faithful will gather at the Cathedral of the Incarnation in Nashville to celebrate the Chrism mass. This is a beautiful liturgy where the priests of Nashville will renew their vows, and the holy oils will be blessed by the Bishop to be used throughout the year at all parishes for the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, and Anointing of the Sick. We will gather for the mass of the Lord's Supper on Thursday. This liturgy recalls when Jesus gathered with his disciples in the upper room for the Jewish feast of Passover where he instituted the Holy Eucharist and the ministerial priesthood. On Friday, we will gather for the solemn event of the Lord's Passion calling to mind the ultimate sacrifice that Jesus made on the cross to save us from sin and death. One of the highlights of this evening is when we venerate the cross of Christ, and indeed our own, thanking the Lord for all that he has done for us and reminding us that we too must share in his cross in this life.
The celebration of the greatest event in human history, the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, begins on Saturday evening when many will gather for the Easter Vigil. The sacraments of Christian Initiation will be administered on this evening where the gift of Sanctifying Grace will be given to the Catechumens reborn in the waters of baptism and those already baptized will be brought into full communion with the Church in the sacraments of Confirmation and Holy Eucharist. For those who do not participate in the Easter Vigil, the Lord's resurrection will be celebrated during one of the morning masses on Easter Sunday, Resurrection Day! Let us pray for the grace to walk with the Lord during this Holy Week, to deny ourselves, pick up our cross and follow him so that we too may one day share in his glorious resurrection.
Fr. Mark Sappenfield
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Altar Care Society
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Parade around the Our FatherRead more