What is Holy Week?
In short it is the week before Easter that bridges or connects our celebration of Lent (the time of preparing our hearts) with our celebration of Easter (the time of rejoicing in Christ’s victory on our behalf). It begins with Palm Sunday, continues through Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, The Easter Vigil and Easter Sunday Services. I am often asked “What is the purpose of so many services?” “Do I really need to attend all of them?” “I am busy, can’t one service be enough?” “Between Spring Break, decorating, volleyball practices, cleaning my house and all the other stuff going on life is busy. My schedule can’t really handle something else!”
I get that our lives are busy and stressful. Americans live with no margins for error or time for “additional stuff.” We are so busy juggling the proverbial balls/aspects of our lives that it feels overwhelming when the church adds to it by having three days of extra services.
But it is precisely because of the way that we live nowadays that we are in desperate need to follow Jesus during these both dark and crucial moments. This is after all the week we walk with Jesus during the most difficult time of his life. During Holy week, we attempt in our own ways to experience some of the pain, the heartache, and the rejection that Jesus felt. We began this week celebrating the height of praise as Jesus entered Jerusalem. We accompany Jesus from that mountain top experience to an emotional last meal and an intense time of prayer. This is the week when we stand witness to a tragic betrayal, devastating false accusations, and the horror of a mocking, torturous death.
We do this each and every year so that we can encounter Easter all over again. So that the wonder, majesty, and power of (Easter) hope and forgiveness can once again revitalize our faith, renew our spirits, and help us to further embrace the new life that Jesus has gifted us. Our observances of Lent and Holy week are – at its core – us making room in our hearts for Jesus. To ignore Holy Week is to minimize the power of the Easter resurrection to bring hope, faith, and change into our already overwhelming lives. Yes, we may need to sacrifice something else to find the time. But isn’t that what Easter is all about. Sacrifice something that is precious so that true and real life can be resorted to God’s people!
Pr Dan’s Guide to Holy Week at Alpine
Palm Sunday April 9th 8 & 10 AM. During our 8:00 service we will accompany Jesus as he enters Jerusalem to praise and shouts of Joy. Our 10:00 Service will be our Holy Week Cantata Performance.
Maundy Thursday Celebration Thursday April13th 11:00 AM and 7:00PM. Sometimes called Holy Thursday, this is when we remember the events in the upper room the night Jesus was betrayed, namely the institution of the Lord’s Supper and the giving of a new commandment “Love one and other.”
Good Friday or Holy Friday Service April 14th at 7:00 PM. Good Friday commemorates the day when our Lord gave his life to save us from our sins. It is a very humbling service, as we contemplate the cost that Jesus paid for our redemption.
Easter Sunday Celebration April 16th 8:00 & 10:00 AM. Easter is when we relive the victory of Jesus, when he defeated death by rising from the dead. This is when worship begins with the shouts of the Redeemed: “Christ is Risen. He is Risen indeed.” The achingly painful story comes to the amazing ending which truly never ends. This is also when we embrace the new life that Jesus won for us.
Please join us for any and all of these memorable services. All are welcome!
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