Join us for the Drama & Beauty of our Holy Week Services
From early times, Christians have observed the week before Easter as a time of special devotion. Good Shepherd offers several services during Holy Week which provide a liturgical experience of the last days of Jesus' earthly life, as well as the time and events leading up to his resurrection which we celebrate on Easter Day.
Join us for one, several or all of these special services.
palm sunday, march 25: 7:30 am, 10 am and 6 pm
On Palm Sunday, the congregation gathers outside on the back patio (weather permitting), receives palm leaves - symbols of Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem, and then processes into church. Knowing that many people will not be available to participate in the remaining events of Holy Week, this service includes a dramatic reading of the Passion Gospel, which recounts the events of Maundy Thursday and Good Friday.
A children and youth liturgy for Palm Sunday will take place in the chapel during Sunday School time.
holy eucharist services, tuesday & wednesday, march 27 & 28: 7 pm in our chapel
maundy thursday, march 29:
5:45 pm Soup Supper, Readings and Sermon in the Parish Hall
Foot Washing Service Begins at 7:00 pm in Parish Hall
During a meal on this night, which is usually referred to as "The Last Supper," Jesus gave his disciples a new commandment of love - to love one another as Jesus has loved them. Our celebration begins with a simple soup and bread supper at 5:45 pm in the parish hall, followed, at 6:30 pm, by the Maundy Thursday readings and a homily. After the homily (around 7 pm), the congregation processes into the church and reenacts the occasion when Jesus washed the feet of the disciples. The Maundy Thursday service continues with a celebration of the Holy Eucharist, after which parishioners are invited to participate in an all-night prayer vigil in the chapel, which commemorates Jesus' time spent praying in the Garden of Gethsemane.
good friday, march 30: services at 12 noon and 7 pm
Good Friday is the day when we commemorate Jesus' suffering and death on the Cross. For many, it is a day to fast and to set aside time for worship and prayer - time to reflect on our Lord's suffering and his victory over death. At Good Shepherd we celebrate this day with two services - at 12 Noon, and at 7 pm. During the Good Friday service we recite some special prayers written just for this day, and parishioners are invited to participate in the "Veneration of the Cross" liturgy by lighting a candle and placing it at the foot of a large wooden cross that is leaned against the altar. At the conclusion of the service, the congregation receives communion from the bread and wine that were consecrated at the Maundy Thursday service. For many parishioners, the solemn Good Friday liturgy is one of the highlights of the year.
holy saturday / the easter vigil, march 31: service at 8 pm
The Easter Vigil service is the most ancient liturgy in the Christian Church and is the first celebration of Easter. Music will be led by EveningSong, our contemporary music group. The service begins outside underneath the entryway at 8 pm with the lighting of the "Easter Fire," and the procession of the congregation with the Paschal Candle into the darkened church. Following the chanting of the "Exsultet," an ancient hymn of praise recounting the miracle of the resurrection, we will experience the dramatic reading of three lessons from the Old Testament - all of which include images of the transition from death to the new life of Easter. Following these readings, we will baptize one infant and one youth, and then turn on the lights in the church, ring bells and joyously proclaim "Christ is Risen!"
easter sunday, april 1: services at 7:30 am, 9:15 am and 11:15 am
Easter Day is our celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Due to the large number of people who come to church on Easter Day, we celebrate Easter with three services. (NOTE THE CHANGE FROM OUR NORMAL SUNDAY SCHEDULE). There will be no Sunday School this day, and nursery care will be provided at both the 9:15 and 11:15 am services. The choir will sing at both the 7:30 and 9:15 am services, and our MorningSong contemporary group will provide music at the 11:15 service.
Following the 9:15 service there will be an Easter Egg Hunt for the children.