Worship Planning – Holy Week

Holy Week

The Manual on the Liturgy (page 310) quotes J. Gordon Davies from his book Holy Week: A Short History (John Knox Press, 1963, p. 65):

The purpose of Holy Week … was to set the facts of the Gospel before the worshippers; but it must be emphasized that this should not be taken to mean that Holy Week is merely an occasion for pious remembrance.  It is or should be more than a series of commemorations of past events recalled to mind; it is or should be the means whereby the worshippers participate in the saving events.  We should not think of it as a number of ceremonies, at which the faithful are present, but as a unified sequence of sacramental acts whereby they commit themselves afresh to Christ and share anew in His death and resurrection.

Unless the Church can learn to identify itself with Christ in His death and resurrection, unless it can, on Palm Sunday, approach His victory through death, die with Him on Good Friday and rise with Him at the culmination of the Paschal Vigil, it cannot accomplish its mission, which is not only to proclaim the good news but to embody it and to make it the pattern of its corporate life, even as Christ Himself not only proclaimed the Gospel but was and is the Gospel.

Holy Week is the richest and most dramatic week of the liturgical year. Each liturgy is filled with drama that invites the assembly into the passion of Christ. The liturgies are passion play and living cross, celebration and lament all poured into one baptismal event.

The following links provide some thoughts and resources for your celebration of the Great and Holy Week.

 

Where every member is a missionary, every pastor is a mission director, and every congregation is a mission center.