Immersing ourselves in the experience of Holy Week
During Holy Week, Christians recall the events leading up to Jesus’ death by crucifixion and his Resurrection. Holy Week is also the last week of Lent.
The week includes five days of special significance. The first is Palm Sunday, which commemorates Jesus’ humble entry (on a donkey) into Jerusalem to observe Passover. According to the Gospel account, he was greeted by crowds of people who spread their cloaks and laid palm leaves in his path and proclaimed him the Son of David (Matthew 21:5).
Palm Sunday is celebrated with a blessing and procession of palms. Maundy Thursday marks Jesus’ institution at the Last Supper of the Eucharist, thereafter a central element of Christian worship.
Good Friday commemorates Jesus’ suffering and death on the cross; it is traditionally a day of sorrow, penance, and fasting. Holy Saturday, also called Easter Vigil, is the traditional end of Lent.
There are many ways to observe Holy Week, and Rev Dr Ockert Meyer, Lecturer in Preaching, Worship and Theology at United Theological College has prepared five days of reflections using artwork to focus on the journey toward the cross.
“As far as I can remember, this will be the first Easter Weekend when I will not be in church,” notes Rev. Dr Meyer. “The same will be true for many other Christians in Australia and around the world. The question is: how can we still be the church, if we cannot be in a church? How can we celebrate if we can’t be together?”
“But more to the point as far as Holy Week is concerned: How can we immerse ourselves in the story of Jesus’ fears and passion at a time when everyone seems to be consumed by their own fears and the fears about their own circumstances?”
Rev. Dr Meyer helps to immerse us in these fears and passion with his Holy Week Reflections for 2020, and it is hoped that while in isolation we can truly immerse ourselves in the journey to the cross this Easter.
- Download the Holy Week Reflections for 2020 by Rev. Dr Ockert Meyer here.