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5 years ago  ::  Apr 07, 2009 - 1:26AM #1
Merope
Posts: 9,278

We're now beginning the holiest week of the Church year ... the Hebdomada SanctaMaior Hebdomada (I think the Latin is especially beautiful here).


How do y'all and/or your parishes observe it or plan to observe it this year?  Do you primarily observe the Triduum or do your observances extend to the beginning of the week, as well?  Anybody making any retreats this week?  Anybody getting baptized, confirmed, or received at the Easter Vigil?  Anybody sponsoring (if that's the right word) anyone who is?


I find it to be an extraordinary time ... holy, exhausting, powerful, beautiful, terrifying, sorrowful.  I feel all these in my bones during this week.  Anyone else feel the same? 


 

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5 years ago  ::  Apr 07, 2009 - 8:15AM #2
Miguel_de_servet
Posts: 17,050

Merope


Apr 7, 2009 -- 1:26AM, Merope wrote:

We're now beginning the holiest week of the Church year ... the Hebdomada SanctaMaior Hebdomada (I think the Latin is especially beautiful here).


How do y'all and/or your parishes observe it or plan to observe it this year?  Do you primarily observe the Triduum or do your observances extend to the beginning of the week, as well?  Anybody making any retreats this week?  Anybody getting baptized, confirmed, or received at the Easter Vigil?  Anybody sponsoring (if that's the right word) anyone who is?


I find it to be an extraordinary time ... holy, exhausting, powerful, beautiful, terrifying, sorrowful.  I feel all these in my bones during this week.  Anyone else feel the same?


I do: see thread "I went to Church today, oh boy ... the priest was reading from Mark’s Passion".


Mario

Revelation is above, not against Reason

“The everlasting God is a refuge, and underneath you are his eternal arms ...” (Deut 33:27)
“Do you have an arm like God, and can you thunder with a voice like his?” (Job 40:9)
“By the Lord’s word [dabar] the heavens were made; and by the breath [ruwach] of his mouth all their host.” (Psalm 33:6)
“Who would have believed what we just heard? When was the arm of the Lord revealed through him?” (Isaiah 53:1)
“Lord, who has believed our message, and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?” (John 12:38)
“For not the hearers of the law are righteous before God, but the doers of the law will be declared righteous.” (Romans 2:13)

“Owe no one anything, except to love one another, for the one who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law.”(Romans 13:8)
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5 years ago  ::  Apr 07, 2009 - 8:53AM #3
hewy1952
Posts: 2,454

Our huge parish does celebrate the (equivalently) Triduum.


Last night--the first of two nights--was a Community Reconciliation liturgy.  Only 5 elderly priests to assist more than 1,100 penitents, the majority absolved communally.  It will be even bigger tonight.  As a regular, monthly attendee at Reconciliation, I can report that on regular Saturdays, generally I am the only person, or at most 1 of 3.  (I leave room for commentary on the issue here!)


I was lector last Palm Sunday (8:30), the the Church was standing room only.


The same will be true on Holy Thursday evening, Good Friday (only one Liturgy--the other 3 are Stations); and on Holy Saturday evening.  A morning Mass has been added on Easter Sunday (usually considered the 'empty tomb' Mass, because of the Gospel), and the evening Mass dropped--appropriate.


One other editorial item that I can report from the Reconcilation Liturgy.  As I (you too?) get older, what is 'venial' is beginning to seem 'more serious'; what seemed 'unreportable' before--Pride, Anger, Greed, Intolerance--are 'top of the list' items.  Even despair is making the list since, (as one gets into late 60's) time appears to be 'running out on the ability to really change'. 


Holy Week can be terrible; Easter is very welcome.

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5 years ago  ::  Apr 07, 2009 - 10:10AM #4
Merope
Posts: 9,278

Apr 7, 2009 -- 8:53AM, hewy1952 wrote:

Our huge parish does celebrate the (equivalently) Triduum.


Last night--the first of two nights--was a Community Reconciliation liturgy.  Only 5 elderly priests to assist more than 1,100 penitents, the majority absolved communally.  It will be even bigger tonight.  As a regular, monthly attendee at Reconciliation, I can report that on regular Saturdays, generally I am the only person, or at most 1 of 3.  (I leave room for commentary on the issue here!)


I was lector last Palm Sunday (8:30), the the Church was standing room only.


The same will be true on Holy Thursday evening, Good Friday (only one Liturgy--the other 3 are Stations); and on Holy Saturday evening.  A morning Mass has been added on Easter Sunday (usually considered the 'empty tomb' Mass, because of the Gospel), and the evening Mass dropped--appropriate.


One other editorial item that I can report from the Reconcilation Liturgy.  As I (you too?) get older, what is 'venial' is beginning to seem 'more serious'; what seemed 'unreportable' before--Pride, Anger, Greed, Intolerance--are 'top of the list' items.  Even despair is making the list since, (as one gets into late 60's) time appears to be 'running out on the ability to really change'. 


Holy Week can be terrible; Easter is very welcome.



When George Maloney was alive and I made regular retreats under his direction, he always had a Reconciliation liturgy during the retreat.  It was lovely.  That was my first (and, to date, only) exposure to Reconciliation in a group liturgical context.  Apparently his liturgy was SRO back when his retreats were more heavily attended; the liturgy used to draw people from miles around -- in addition to the retreatants.


My personal preference is still for one-on-one Confession.  But I think a Reconciliation liturgy can -- and obviously does -- work well for some parishes.

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5 years ago  ::  Apr 07, 2009 - 10:26AM #5
Merope
Posts: 9,278

Apr 7, 2009 -- 8:53AM, hewy1952 wrote:

 As I (you too?) get older, what is 'venial' is beginning to seem 'more serious'; what seemed 'unreportable' before--Pride, Anger, Greed, Intolerance--are 'top of the list' items.  Even despair is making the list since, (as one gets into late 60's) time appears to be 'running out on the ability to really change'. 



I think that's a point well taken.  I think as we age and mature, we realize that what we previously dismissed as 'venial' has often become habitual and therefore (sometimes) grave. 

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5 years ago  ::  Apr 07, 2009 - 2:20PM #6
quondamonachus
Posts: 400

Yeah, it's a big and busy week at our parish, too.


Holy Thursday, a dozen footwashing stations are set up around the nave giving all a chance to wash and be washed. Good Friday is presided by a lay man or woman. Easter Vigil gives us in addition to the traditional fire and choir, a cacophony of streamers, banners, dancers, orchestra and drummers, bell choir, clapping, adult immersion baptisms - the whole nine yards.


Last night I hosted an evening of reflection and sharing for the NY affiliate of VOTF and gave a reflection. On Friday, the Pax Christi affiliate of our parish will participate in the annual Stations of the Cross from the United Nations through 42nd Street. Our parish has been assigned to conduct the Seventh Station.

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5 years ago  ::  Apr 07, 2009 - 7:53PM #7
jane2
Posts: 14,295

I no longer have the stamina to participate in the Holy Thursday through the Easter Triduum. The first pastor of my last parish was a liturgist and the Triduum was orderly and beautiful. I rather like the reserved liturgy in its fullness--the empty church on Good Friday until the official liturgy of the Veneration of the Cross.


So many of our parishes here now in the Atlantaarea think they have to fill in with a whole afternoon of Good Friday with what are really private, not liturgical, devotions.


********************************************


hewy and merope


I'm not certain I concur with you about veniality. We humans are all flawed and we know know that. We also have great capability for good. I think it is better to concentrate on how we can accomplish the good in our lives rather than how flawed we are. I think we are called to be the best flawed creature we can be.


I do know there is a small wing in the Church today that calls each of us to be the creature/person we were uniquely created to be. I like the book by Jas. Martin, S.J. BECOMING WHO YOU ARE, based in great measure on the writings of Thomas Merton. It's a sort of Catholic existentialism, for want of a better description.


I suspect we each have a perspective on Holy Week and that it does change as we age. Watching Spring in North Georgia has long been a metaphor for lent, Holy Week, and Easter. Spring here begins with Lenten purple and progresses into color. Our beautiful dogwoods are in early blossom with their white and pink flowers of crosses. On Easter we will see the beautiful dogwoods and the azaleas. It never fails to pull me in.


In the end we are an Easter people.


Alleluia, Alleluia

discuss catholicism
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5 years ago  ::  Apr 07, 2009 - 10:19PM #8
WaveringCC
Posts: 5,123

Apr 7, 2009 -- 7:53PM, jane2 wrote:


I no longer have the stamina to participate in the Holy Thursday through the Easter Triduum. The first pastor of my last parish was a liturgist and the Triduum was orderly and beautiful. I rather like the reserved liturgy in its fullness--the empty church on Good Friday until the official liturgy of the Veneration of the Cross.


So many of our parishes here now in the Atlantaarea think they have to fill in with a whole afternoon of Good Friday with what are really private, not liturgical, devotions.


********************************************


hewy and merope


I'm not certain I concur with you about veniality. We humans are all flawed and we know know that. We also have great capability for good. I think it is better to concentrate on how we can accomplish the good in our lives rather than how flawed we are. I think we are called to be the best flawed creature we can be.


I do know there is a small wing in the Church today that calls each of us to be the creature/person we were uniquely created to be. I like the book by Jas. Martin, S.J. BECOMING WHO YOU ARE, based in great measure on the writings of Thomas Merton. It's a sort of Catholic existentialism, for want of a better description.


I suspect we each have a perspective on Holy Week and that it does change as we age. Watching Spring in North Georgia has long been a metaphor for lent, Holy Week, and Easter. Spring here begins with Lenten purple and progresses into color. Our beautiful dogwoods are in early blossom with their white and pink flowers of crosses. On Easter we will see the beautiful dogwoods and the azaleas. It never fails to pull me in.


In the end we are an Easter people.


Alleluia, Alleluia




Isn't that what the "good news of the lord" is all about?


Jane,


I keep the quote by Merton under the glass top of my desk in my home office.  I haven't read the book by Martin, but if it is based on Merton, it most likely includes this.


"It is not humility to insist on being someone that you are not.
It is as much as saying that you know better than God
   who you are and who you ought to be.
How do you expect to arrive at the end of your own journey
   if you take the road to another man's city?
How do you expect to reach your own perfection by leading somebody else's life:?
His sanctity will never be yours;
   you must have the humility to work out your own salvation in a darkness
   where you are absolutely alone...
And so it takes heroic humility to be yourself and to be nobody but the man,
   or the artist, that God intended you to be.
You will be made to feel that your honesty is only pride.
This is a serious temptation because you can never be sure
   whether you are being true to your true self or only building up a defense
   for the false personality that is the creature of your own appetite for esteem.
But the greatest humility can be learned from the anguish
   of keeping your balance in such a position:
   of continuing to be yourself without getting tough about it
   and asserting your false self against the false selves of other people."

Thomas Merton, The New Seeds of Contemplation, New Directions Publishing Co. 1961, p. 100-101

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5 years ago  ::  Apr 07, 2009 - 10:32PM #9
WaveringCC
Posts: 5,123

Apr 7, 2009 -- 7:53PM, jane2 wrote:


I no longer have the stamina to participate in the Holy Thursday through the Easter Triduum. The first pastor of my last parish was a liturgist and the Triduum was orderly and beautiful. I rather like the reserved liturgy in its fullness--the empty church on Good Friday until the official liturgy of the Veneration of the Cross.


So many of our parishes here now in the Atlantaarea think they have to fill in with a whole afternoon of Good Friday with what are really private, not liturgical, devotions.


********************************************


I suspect we each have a perspective on Holy Week and that it does change as we age.


I have not participated in the triduum services for years. As you say, perspective changes as we age. Where we find deep meaning, as opposed to familiar ritual, also may change. The traditional way of spending holy week no longer touches me the way it clearly still touches many people, including Hewy and Merope.  Perhaps again someday, but not now, not for several years.


So, starting a few years ago, if the weather was decent, I sometimes spent the afternoon of Good Friday at a beautiful and peaceful spot on the Potomac river, taking in all the beauty and peace and magnificence. Totally awed by God's good and God's love. Praying - yes, meditating - yes, contemplating - yes.  But not in a church.


I have also gone to Taize services on Good Friday.  A couple of years ago, at the Taize, the tears just came, and my cheeks were quickly wet. Fortuna tely I had a tissue!  Never has a traditional Good Friday service and stations of the cross affected me the way the Taize service did.   So I have learned. I go "where the Spirit moves" - leads-  me to go.


Watching Spring in North Georgia has long been a metaphor for lent, Holy Week, and Easter. Spring here begins with Lenten purple and progresses into color. Our beautiful dogwoods are in early blossom with their white and pink flowers of crosses. On Easter we will see the beautiful dogwoods and the azaleas. It never fails to pull me in.


In the end we are an Easter people.


Alleluia, Alleluia




It is spring here also, but still very early spring.  The cherries are gorgeous, as always, but the daffodils and forsythia were the first bright yellow harbingers of the sun we have waited for so long during this very long, very dreary, and unusually cold winter.  It is still cold. Today it was in the 40s, and there were actually snow flurries when I was driving home from work.  The baby new green of the grass and plants starting to bud, flowers, and snow flurries!  Fortunately, just flurries and nothing more.


We will get the azaleas and dogwoods (I LOVE dogwoods) beginning in late April or early May.  Enjoy your early southern spring!

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5 years ago  ::  Apr 07, 2009 - 10:50PM #10
newsjunkie
Posts: 5,741

Apr 7, 2009 -- 7:53PM, jane2 wrote:


I no longer have the stamina to participate in the Holy Thursday through the Easter Triduum. The first pastor of my last parish was a liturgist and the Triduum was orderly and beautiful. I rather like the reserved liturgy in its fullness--the empty church on Good Friday until the official liturgy of the Veneration of the Cross.


So many of our parishes here now in the Atlantaarea think they have to fill in with a whole afternoon of Good Friday with what are really private, not liturgical, devotions.


********************************************


hewy and merope


I'm not certain I concur with you about veniality. We humans are all flawed and we know know that. We also have great capability for good. I think it is better to concentrate on how we can accomplish the good in our lives rather than how flawed we are. I think we are called to be the best flawed creature we can be.


I do know there is a small wing in the Church today that calls each of us to be the creature/person we were uniquely created to be. I like the book by Jas. Martin, S.J. BECOMING WHO YOU ARE, based in great measure on the writings of Thomas Merton. It's a sort of Catholic existentialism, for want of a better description.


I suspect we each have a perspective on Holy Week and that it does change as we age. Watching Spring in North Georgia has long been a metaphor for lent, Holy Week, and Easter. Spring here begins with Lenten purple and progresses into color. Our beautiful dogwoods are in early blossom with their white and pink flowers of crosses. On Easter we will see the beautiful dogwoods and the azaleas. It never fails to pull me in.


In the end we are an Easter people.


Alleluia, Alleluia




Lovely post, jane. Aaaahhhh spring! It has been a glorious one here in Houston. It started early; jasmine was blooming early last month. Now we have so many flowers, and our fig tree has all its leaves. We have some big pecan trees around the house, and their leaves are coming out, too.


I don't have the stamina for Triduum lately either. Work is so intense in mid-semester. And when I go to church I go alone, and sometimes I fell like I'd just rather be at home.. Last 2 years I went to Easter vigil alone, and probably will this year, too because I love the service. But I don't think I'll go to Holy Thursday or Good Friday. Last year they had a Stations of the Cross for social justice in front of city hall, and I went to that. That was a good service. This year I'm thinking about going to our parish's Hispanic community's Stations. Or maybe I'll go to the social justice Stations again.

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