Journey with Jesus: Passion Week and Easter 2016

Yesterday, Palm Sunday, began what often is called the “holiest of weeks” on the church year calendar. In ways radically different from what may be familiar, popular, or even comfortable, Christians everywhere are called to journey with Jesus. This extraordinary week invites each to increase companionship with the Savior of the world.

Through private devotion or corporate worship, opportunities are available for how we might walk the way of the Cross. For Episcopal Christians, our “holy days of obligation” include the three-day combination of the Triduum: Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and The Great Vigil of Easter or The Sunday of The Resurrection: Easter Day. Indeed, this week is to be “other” and filled with irreplaceable blessings. This week, able-bodied adult, youth, and child “pilgrims” are asked to stretch themselves by being more present for worship at St. Peter’s. They are likely to learn more about Jesus, experience new beginnings, and be surprised by hope, all from what the design of this week intends.

May this special edition of the eNews provide more information to support your journey both with Jesus and our fellow followers.

In peace and gratitude for life at St. Peter’s,

– The Reverend Ollie V. Rencher, Rector

Holy Week at St. Peter’s

Holy Week at St. Peter’s: During this holiest of times in the Christian calendar, we offer many ways for the St. Peter’s family to participate. Please join us throughout the week to enrich your experience of Easter by “walking the way of Christ,” a tradition rooted in the Gospel narratives, which likely emerged among the first disciples of Jesus.

  • Holy Monday-Maundy Thursday 8:00 a.m.-8:30 a.m. – Morning Prayer
  • Maundy Thursday 7:00 p.m. – The Maundy Thursday Liturgy
  • Maundy Thursday 8:30 p.m. -7:30 a.m. Good Friday – All Night Prayer Vigil
  • Good Friday 7:30 a.m. – Communion from the Reserved Sacrament
  • Good Friday Noon-3:00 p.m. – Solemn Liturgy
  • Good Friday 4:00 p.m. – Stations of the Cross
  • Holy Saturday 7:00 p.m. – The Great Vigil of Easter
  • The Sunday of the Resurrection 7:00 a.m., 9:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m., 5:00 p.m. – Easter Day Holy Eucharist

Incense (hypoallergenic) will be used at the following liturgies: Maundy Thursday, March 24, 7:00 p.m.; Saturday, March 26, The Great Vigil of Easter at 7:00 p.m.; and Easter, 11:00 a.m.

Practices Rooted in Ancient Tradition

Practices Rooted in Ancient Tradition: All that we do during Holy Week and Easter is rooted in ancient tradition. To enhance your experience, here is additional information about some of the services and rituals listed above.

  • Morning Prayer on Holy Monday through Maundy Thursday mornings offer a contemplative way to start the day. Lay ministers officiate this service of the The Daily Office throughout the year.
  • The Maundy Thursday liturgy invites us to consider the command of the Last Supper, and includes foot-washing; the stripping, washing, and anointing of the altar; and procession of the Blessed Sacrament to the Chapel for an All Night Prayer Vigil, in the context of rich music.
  • The All Night Prayer Vigil invites us to respond to Jesus’ request to the disciples to “remain here, and stay awake with me.” Sign up to participate and/or submit prayer requests at the Holy Week at St. Peter’s sign in the Parish House Lobby or online < http://www.st-peters.org/rsvp/> beginning Sunday, March 20.
  • Good Friday begins with 7:30 a.m. prayers and Communion from the Reserved Sacrament in the Chapel. Later, our annual Solemn Liturgy from Noon until 3:00 p.m. includes organ and choral music, the Passion narrative, meditations by The Reverends Paul Hanneman, Keith C. Lane, Ollie V. Rencher, and Joslyn Ogden Schaefer, silence, and the Procession and Veneration of the Cross. At 4:00 p.m., Stations of the Cross for all ages commemorate Jesus’ last hours, including those who witnessed Jesus’ suffering.
  • The Great Vigil of Easter on Saturday is the culmination of Lent and the initiation of Eastertide beginning with lighting the first fire of Easter in front of the church. This ancient liturgy unites many opposites: the struggle between dark and light, cross and resurrection, death and eternal life.
  • The Sunday of The Resurrection: Easter Day celebrates the risen Christ.

Schedule Changes

Schedule Changes: The following regularly-scheduled activities will not occur during Holy Week or the week following Easter:

  • No Formation classes on Easter Day, resuming Sunday, April 3.
  • No Kerygma Bible Study on Monday, March 28, resuming Monday, April 4.
  • 8:00 a.m. Morning Prayer will be cancelled on Friday, March 25, and throughout the week following Easter, resuming Monday, April 4.

Easter Child Care

Easter Child Care: Child care for infants and toddlers will be available Easter Sunday from 8:30 a.m. until 1:00 p.m.

High Sunday Brunch

High Sunday Brunch: Make reservations today for the Second Sunday of Easter, April 3, now commonly called High Sunday here at St. Peter’s. The annual fare for our brunch is shrimp and grits, quiche, and breakfast casserole with sides of asparagus, fresh fruit and biscuits. There will also be a dessert table, child-friendly foods, tea, lemonade and coffee, accompanied by live music. Spread the word about this wonderful occasion for the parish family to gather in the Parish Hall for a festive meal in celebration of Easter. Pre-paid reservations are required and may be paid online http://www.st-peters.org/rsvp/ through March 31, or at the Receptionist Desk no later than Sunday, March 28.  Tickets are $10 for adults and youth 13 and older, $5 for children 6-12, with a family cap of $35.00. Ticket prices will be slightly higher the day of the event.

Easter Potluck Lunch

Easter Potluck Lunch— Celebrate Easter with the 20s and 30s at the home of Marion and Cooper Morrison after the Easter Service. RSVP m.lyle.morrison@gmail.com

Discussing Racial Reconciliation at Pub Theology on April 7

Discussing Racial Reconciliation at Pub Theology on April 7: All adults are invited to this casual weeknight gathering, which started in 2013. On April 7, 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., as a continuation of last’s month’s rather provoking discussion, the Reverends Ollie V. Rencher and Joslyn Ogden Schaefer will co-host “Our Call to Racial Reconciliation” at The Liberty Restaurant, 1812 South Boulevard. Nonalcoholic beverages, snacks, and more are available. If you know or think you will attend, contact The Reverend Ollie Rencher (orencher@st-peters.org) or The Reverend Joslyn Ogden Schaefer (jschaefer@st-peters.org).

Eastertide Parish Book Study

Eastertide Parish Book Study: Between the World and Me by Ta-Nahesi Coates, a 2015 McArthur Foundation Fellow and national correspondent for The Atlantic Magazine, has contributed to constructive engagement and dialogue on topics such as systemic racism, inequality and the persistence of racial injustice. The book will be introduced at the Parish Hall Forum on Sunday, April 3, by Chuck Wynder, Social Justice and Advocacy Engagement Missioner of The Episcopal Church. In April and May, several opportunities for meaningful discussion will be offered.