Tag Archives: Easter Vigil

The Easter Vigil on Holy Saturday. Catholic Inspiration

We join the Church around the world as we wait in hope for the resurrection of the Lord.  This extraordinary Mass empowers us to look at the challenges in our lives with the conviction that God will give us the grace we need for the task at hand.

Mass Readings – Easter Vigil

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Catholic Inspiration Archives


Holy Week Preparations

Holy Week

Pastoral Note: This post was originally given on April 12, 2014.  I share it once again in the hope that all of us will enter more fully into the gift of this sacred time.  Fr. Andrew

Study:  Recall a time in your life when you experienced death and new life.  Where did you find the strength?  Who helped you through this time?

Pray:  Spend some time reflecting on the death and resurrection of Jesus this week.  Read Mark 14-16; Matthew 26-28; Luke 22-24; and John 18-21.  Take in as many prayer opportunities as possible in your parish.

Serve:  Who in your life is dealing with life and death issues right now?  How might you be present to them to offer help, comfort, or strength?

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We enter into the heart of the Christian mystery: Holy Week offers us a time to pause, reflect, and pray as the Church ponders on the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

This mystery, often called the Paschal Mystery, recalls us to the saving work of the Lord.  His death frees of from the burdens of sin and death, and his resurrection opens for us the path to eternal life.  This mystery is profoundly experienced over the Triduum – the 3 Great Days:

  • Holy Thursday – the Mass of the Lord’s Supper
  • Good Friday – the Passion of the Christ
  • Easter (Vigil/Day) – the Resurrection of the Lord

On Holy Thursday we find ourselves in Jerusalem, eating with the disciples at the Lord’s Supper and feeling awkward as he washes their feet – wondering how we would react if he did that for us.  We might identify with Peter or Judas – especially when we consider the times we have willingly betrayed or turned our back on the Lord.

On Good Friday we experience the physical pain, emotional abandonment, and personal humiliation on the path to Calvary (also called Golgotha or Skull Place) and look on with horror at the cruel death of Jesus.  We might also consider the times we have helped others – as Simon did when he was forced to carry the Cross of Christ.    And then we stand in profound sorrow with Mary, the Mother of Jesus, helpless as the innocent suffer injustice.

On Easter we wait in vigil and rise early in the morning with Mary Magdalen, only to find to our wonder and joy that the tomb is empty:  Christ is alive!  Our world, like that of the apostles, is changed forever as we experience new hope and life.

A word to the wise – we get out of Holy Week what we put into it.  Here are some simple ways for an incredible experience.

  • Make church services a top priority – Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter (Vigil or Day).
  • Take time to read and reflect on the scriptures (see at the top under “Pray”).
  • Make Holy Thursday an opportunity to offer a special act of service or kindness to another.
  • Make Good Friday fasting extra special with a gift to a particular charity that helps the poor.
  • Make Easter a time of gratitude – take a quiet moment to count our blessings and thank the Lord.
  • Find some time throughout this week to tell the people in our lives how much we love them.

May this be a time for all of us to grow closer to the Lord and one another.

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

Walking with the Lord in Holy Week (March 9-12, 2015 – Our Lady of the Valley – Green Valley, AZ) This parish mission takes the listener on a journey with Christ – from his entry into Jerusalem, through the Last Supper, his Passion, and his Resurrection.

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Catholic Inspiration Archives

 


Easter Vigil

Candlelight

Study:  How did you learn your Christian faith?  When did it become something you claimed for your own?

Pray:  This is a good time to count our blessings and draw near to the Lord in gratitude for the gift of life.

Serve:  Perhaps there is someone to whom you might want to say, “I love you.”  Perhaps this is a good time right now…

Mass Readings – Easter Vigil 

Fr. Andrew’s Homily Podcast (7 minutes, given at Cathedral on April 4, 2015)

This holy night finds the Church celebrating the profound mystery of Christ’s saving work.  The Easter Vigil recalls the great moments of salvation history, rejoices with those who enter into full communion with the sacramental life of the Church, and is nourished by Eucharist.  Here are the four key components:

  • The Liturgy of Light
  • The Liturgy of the Word
  • The Liturgy of Initiation
  • The Liturgy of the Eucharist

The Liturgy of Light (or Lucernarium) begins the Easter Vigil.  In the darkness the image of light is used to proclaim our hope in Christ.  Several things happen:

  • A new fire is blessed and from its flames the light of the paschal (Easter) candle is lit
  • This candle is processed into church where the faithful light their own candles from it.
  • By this sea of candlelight the great Easter proclamation of Christ our Light – the Exsultet – is offered.

The Liturgy of the Word recounts the epic story of salvation history through several Old Testament Scriptures:

  • Creation – Genesis 1:1-2.2 and Psalm 104 or 33
  • Abraham’s Sacrifice – Genesis 22:1-18 and Psalm 16
  • Passage through the Red Sea – Exodus 14: 15-15:1 and its Canticle (Exodus 15)
  • The New Jerusalem – Isaiah 54:5-14 and Psalm 30
  • Salvation Offered Freely to All – Isaiah 55:1-11 its Canticle (Isaiah 12)
  • The Fountain of Wisdom – Baruch 3:9-15 and Psalm 19
  • A New Heart and a New Spirit – Ezechiel 36:16-28 and Psalm 42-43

We then move from the Old t0 the New Testament:

  • The Gloria is sung
  • A reading from  Romans 6:3-11 – Christ, raised from the dead, dies no more!
  • The Alleluia is sung
  • The Gospel is read – Mt 28:1-10; Mk 16:1-7, Lk 24:1-12 (depending on the year)

The Liturgy of Initiation then follows where those who have been preparing to enter the Church now receive their sacraments.

  • The Litany of the Saints is sung
  • The Baptismal Font is blessed
  • The Sacrament of Baptism is celebrated
  • The Assembly renews their Baptismal Promises
  • The Sacrament of Confirmation is celebrated

Finally, the Liturgy of the Eucharist allows the entire community to draw near to the altar to receive Jesus Christ in the sacrament of his Body and Blood.  The newly baptized receive Holy Communion for the first time in the company of their fellow Catholics.  Like every Mass:

  • Bread and Wine are brought to the altar
  • The Priest prays the Eucharistic Prayer
  • The Lord’s Prayer is said, followed by the Sign of Peace
  • We receive the Lord Jesus in Holy Communion

The great promise of faith, founded upon God’s saving work through time in the history of salvation, is proclaimed on this holy night.  May Christians around the world renew their faith in Jesus Christ – sharing his love and light with one another.

Christ our Light!


Holy Week Preparations

Holy Week

Pastoral Note: This post was originally given on April 12, 2014.  I share it once again in the hope that all of us will enter more fully into the gift of this sacred time.  Fr. Andrew

Study:  Recall a time in your life when you experienced death and new life.  Where did you find the strength?  Who helped you through this time?

Pray:  Spend some time reflecting on the death and resurrection of Jesus this week.  Read Mark 14-16; Matthew 26-28; Luke 22-24; and John 18-21.  Take in as many prayer opportunities as possible in your parish.

Serve:  Who in your life is dealing with life and death issues right now?  How might you be present to them to offer help, comfort, or strength?

**********

We enter into the heart of the Christian mystery: Holy Week offers us a time to pause, reflect, and pray as the Church ponders on the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

This mystery, often called the Paschal Mystery, recalls us to the saving work of the Lord.  His death frees of from the burdens of sin and death, and his resurrection opens for us the path to eternal life.  This mystery is profoundly experienced over the Triduum – the 3 Great Days:

  • Holy Thursday – the Mass of the Lord’s Supper
  • Good Friday – the Passion of the Christ
  • Easter (Vigil/Day) – the Resurrection of the Lord

On Holy Thursday we find ourselves in Jerusalem, eating with the disciples at the Lord’s Supper and feeling awkward as he washes their feet – wondering how we would react if he did that for us.  We might identify with Peter or Judas – especially when we consider the times we have willingly betrayed or turned our back on the Lord.

On Good Friday we experience the physical pain, emotional abandonment, and personal humiliation on the path to Calvary (also called Golgotha or Skull Place) and look on with horror at the cruel death of Jesus.  We might also consider the times we have helped others – as Simon did when he was forced to carry the Cross of Christ.    And then we stand in profound sorrow with Mary, the Mother of Jesus, helpless as the innocent suffer injustice.

On Easter we wait in vigil and rise early in the morning with Mary Magdalen, only to find to our wonder and joy that the tomb is empty:  Christ is alive!  Our world, like that of the apostles, is changed forever as we experience new hope and life.

A word to the wise – we get out of Holy Week what we put into it.  Here are some simple ways for an incredible experience.

  • Make church services a top priority – Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter (Vigil or Day).
  • Take time to read and reflect on the scriptures (see at the top under “Pray”).
  • Make Holy Thursday an opportunity to offer a special act of service or kindness to another.
  • Make Good Friday fasting extra special with a gift to a particular charity that helps the poor.
  • Make Easter a time of gratitude – take a quiet moment to count our blessings and thank the Lord.
  • Find some time throughout this week to tell the people in our lives how much we love them.

May this be a time for all of us to grow closer to the Lord and one another.

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

Walking with the Lord in Holy Week (March 9-12, 2015 – Our Lady of the Valley – Green Valley, AZ) This parish mission takes the listener on a journey with Christ – from his entry into Jerusalem, through the Last Supper, his Passion, and his Resurrection.

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

Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts


Easter Vigil

Candlelight

Study:  How did you learn your Christian faith?  When did it become something you claimed for your own?

Pray:  This is a good time to count our blessings and draw near to the Lord in gratitude for the gift of life.

Serve:  Perhaps there is someone to whom you might want to say, “I love you.”  Perhaps this is a good time right now…

Easter Vigil Readings

This holy night finds the Church celebrating the profound mystery of Christ’s saving work.  The Easter Vigil recalls the great moments of salvation history, rejoices with those who enter into full communion with the sacramental life of the Church, and is nourished by Eucharist.  Here are the four key components:

  • The Liturgy of Light
  • The Liturgy of the Word
  • The Liturgy of Initiation
  • The Liturgy of the Eucharist

The Liturgy of Light (or Lucernarium) begins the Easter Vigil.  In the darkness the image of light is used to proclaim our hope in Christ.  Several things happen:

  • A new fire is blessed and from its flames the light of the paschal (Easter) candle is lit
  • This candle is processed into church where the faithful light their own candles from it.
  • By this sea of candlelight the great Easter proclamation of Christ our Light – the Exsultet – is offered.

The Liturgy of the Word recounts the epic story of salvation history through several Old Testament Scriptures:

  • Creation – Genesis 1:1-2.2 and Psalm 104 or 33
  • Abraham’s Sacrifice – Genesis 22:1-18 and Psalm 16
  • Passage through the Red Sea – Exodus 14: 15-15:1 and its Canticle (Exodus 15)
  • The New Jerusalem – Isaiah 54:5-14 and Psalm 30
  • Salvation Offered Freely to All – Isaiah 55:1-11 its Canticle (Isaiah 12)
  • The Fountain of Wisdom – Baruch 3:9-15 and Psalm 19
  • A New Heart and a New Spirit – Ezechiel 36:16-28 and Psalm 42-43

We then move from the Old t0 the New Testament:

  • The Gloria is sung
  • A reading from  Romans 6:3-11 – Christ, raised from the dead, dies no more!
  • The Alleluia is sung
  • The Gospel is read – Mt 28:1-10; Mk 16:1-7, Lk 24:1-12 (depending on the year)

The Liturgy of Initiation then follows where those who have been preparing to enter the Church now receive their sacraments.

  • The Litany of the Saints is sung
  • The Baptismal Font is blessed
  • The Sacrament of Baptism is celebrated
  • The Assembly renews their Baptismal Promises
  • The Sacrament of Confirmation is celebrated

Finally, the Liturgy of the Eucharist allows the entire community to draw near to the altar to receive Jesus Christ in the sacrament of his Body and Blood.  The newly baptized receive Holy Communion for the first time in the company of their fellow Catholics.  Like every Mass:

  • Bread and Wine are brought to the altar
  • The Priest prays the Eucharistic Prayer
  • The Lord’s Prayer is said, followed by the Sign of Peace
  • We receive the Lord Jesus in Holy Communion

The great promise of faith, founded upon God’s saving work through time in the history of salvation, is proclaimed on this holy night.  May Christians around the world renew their faith in Jesus Christ – sharing his love and light with one another.

Christ our Light!