Holy Week and Easter

Triduum & Easter Schedule

  • Holy Thursday, April 13th, 6:00pm
  • Good Friday, April 14th, 2:30pm
  • Easter Vigil, April 15th, 8:00pm
  • Easter Sunday, April 16th, 8:00am, 10:15am

Holy Thursday – April 13

6:00 pm – Evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper

On Holy Thursday we celebrate only one Mass, called the Evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper, because Jesus celebrated the Passover meal with his disciples in the evening in the upper room. This is one of the richest and most beautiful liturgies of the Church. We commemorate the Last Supper when Jesus instituted both the Sacrament of the Eucharist and the Sacrament of Holy Orders to the priesthood. Since no Mass can be celebrated on Good Friday, many extra hosts are consecrated at this Mass and left on the altar after Holy Communion. The vessels with Holy Communion (Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Christ) are solemnly processed through the Church, accompanied by incense and candles. It is taken to the Altar of Repose. Here, it is reserved in a tabernacle so that it may be taken to the sick at any time and may be consumed on Good Friday. Our Chapel of Repose will remain open for silent prayer until midnight.

Good Friday – April 14

2:30 pm – Service of the Passion of Our Lord

The service of the Lord’s Passion begins with the priest entering and prostrating himself on the floor, in a gesture of total adoration for what the Lord has done. The liturgy is celebrated in three parts. The first is the Liturgy of the Word where we hear Isaiah’s prophecy of the suffering servant and then take up Jesus’ heart-wrenching words, “Father, into your hands, I commend my Spirit.” Then we hear the Passion according to St. John which describes the events in such vivid language. The second part of the liturgy is the Veneration of the Cross. This was first practiced by the early Christians in Jerusalem – actually on Golgotha, the place where Jesus was crucified. Centuries later, this practice was adopted in Rome and other cities. We venerate the cross as the instrument of our salvation, and we adore Christ for his saving work. The final part of the liturgy is Holy Communion (we receive hosts consecrated at the Holy Thursday evening Mass). No Masses are celebrated anywhere in the world on Good Friday. Catholics believe that the Mass presents again the Sacrifice of Christ. Today, we have represented that with our veneration.

Easter Vigil – Saturday, April 15

8:00 pm

The entire celebration of the Easter Vigil, considered to be the greatest of all Church feasts, must take place during the night. Unlike a regular Saturday evening Mass, the rules for the Easter Vigil state that it may not begin until after dark (about 30-45 minutes after sunset). The Vigil begins outside, with only the Easter fire to serve as light. The large Easter Candle is lit. This candle serves as a symbol of Christ’s victory over darkness and it is used at baptisms and funerals throughout the year. As the priest lights the candle from the Easter Fire, he says, “May the light of Christ rising in glory dispel the darkness of our hearts and minds.” One by one, everyone’s candle is lit, passed from person to person. It’s amazing to see how light the church becomes with only candlelight. The second part of the Easter Vigil is the Liturgy of the Word. It is extended at the Vigil and involves several Scripture readings, Psalms, and prayers. These call to mind the story of our salvation. It literally begins, “In the beginning” with Creation, and continues as we hear of Abraham’s faithfulness, the Exodus out of Egypt, and the words of the Prophets speaking of God’s faithfulness. It comes to its culmination with the Gospel describing the faithful women visiting the Lord’s tomb and serving as the first witnesses to the resurrection. The third part is called the Baptismal liturgy. On this night we baptize, confirm and give first Eucharist to adults who have been in the RCIA. We also welcome people baptized in another faith tradition. Finally, in the fourth and final part of the Vigil, the first Eucharist of Easter is celebrated. Those who were baptized and confirmed or welcomed into the Church from another denomination, receive the Eucharist for the first time.

Easter Sunday – April 16

Holy Mass Times: 8:00 a.m. and 10:15 a.m.

PDF of events is here