Lent & Holy Week 2017

(Printable version here: Lent & Holy Week 2017)

Lent

  • Ash Wednesday (March 1, 7pm) – We are dust and to dust we return. As ash crosses are marked on our foreheads, we remember our mortality so that we may truly understand the gift of God’s life within us.  This is the Church’s entry into the passage of Lent.
  • The Five Sundays of LentHere we walk through the temptations of Jesus, the pleading of Nicodemus, the woman at the well, the healing of the blind man, and the raising of Lazarus. Who is this man Jesus?  We heed also the ancient Lenten call to prayer, fasting, and almsgiving.
  • Thursday nights in Lent (starting the 9th) 6pm-7pm sharp –Living as an Urban Monastic – Benedictine Spirituality in Daily Life.” We gather in our newly refreshed lounge to sing, pray, and explore what insights we may glean from the patterns of monastic living.  Signup sheet downstairs.
  • Saturday, March 11, 9am-12pm – “Rhythm of Life Workshop” how do your life habits blend the life of God with your own? Come and learn about the rich history of shaping for yourself a “Rule of Life.”  A tool for every Christian.  Signup sheet downstairs.
  • Also… remember that the study “Divine Violence” continues Wednesday afternoons, and Encounters meets to further explore the Gospel of the week Sunday mornings.

Holy Week – we walk with Christ

  • Passion Sunday (April 9, 8am & 10am) – We gather in the narthex(lobby) and remember the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem with emblems waving (we will use local ‘palms’ this year). As we process we enter into the self-giving and suffering that his entry into that city truly brought.
  • Maundy Thursday (April 13, 6:30pm) – Jesus gathered his friends at table and ate with them the night before his death. He knelt at the meal and washed their feet. Yet at his arrest, they betrayed him. We begin with light refreshments, share in footwashing, and gather around the table of our Lord.
  • Good Friday (April 14, 1pm) – Following his trial and condemnation, Jesus of Nazareth was crucified between two thieves and died by the evening. Why is this a ‘good’ death?  Christians for centuries have seen in this innocent man’s death the freely-given compassion of God entering into our darkest sorrows and fears.  The Son of God faced this for us?

Easter!

  • Multi-Church Easter Vigil (April 15, @ David’s, time TBA) – The news rings out: Christ is risen from the dead! Let us rise and go to meet him.  Join our fellow Anglicans in this beautiful and rich service marking the news of resurrection through fire, prayer, song, and scripture.
  • Easter Sunday (April 16, 8am & 10am) The resurrection celebrated at St. A’s. We celebrate together in Holy Communion and the blessing of Easter baskets.  The Liturgical Season of Easter is 50 days – Join us on Sundays as we continue our celebration.  “Learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and you will find rest for your souls.” – Matthew 11:2

www.staugustinesedmonton.com

—-

The Blessing of Easter baskets

Easter Sunday at St. Augustine’s

In life, we have moments of both feasting and fasting.  There are times when it is appropriate to gather friends together and have a celebration of richness, but there are also times when to celebrate so richly seems disingenuous to the situation.  Lent and Easter, in one part, allow us to embody these moments of joy and sorrow and see them gathered up in the Person and Passion of Jesus.  Our gathering at the cross is our Fast, our celebration of the resurrection our Feast.  God is in both places.

Since somewhere around the 15th century, Christians, particularly in the Ukraine and Poland, have marked the end of Lent with a blessing of festal baskets.  It is the ‘first meal’ blessed to mark our entry into a season of Feasting – the 50 days of Easter.  It is a reminder as well of how our lives at home and at church are to be connected.  This is a balance to whatever fasting you may have chosen to take up in Lent – some fast from meat, consumerism, driving, screens, facebook or whatever seems right in your context and life at the moment.  This is one way we enter the self-giving of Christ.

A blessing will be offered as part of our celebration liturgy at St. Augustine’s on Easter Sunday @ 10am.  If you wish to join in, this will prove a fine way for you to enter into the liturgical act of Easter.

If you wish, kids may bring a basket of goodies to be blessed as well.

Option Abring a selection of items from your tradition that you will eat for Easter brunch/dinner.  Decorate the basket, add a candle and bring the basket to church Easter Sunday.  You may want to include some of the traditional items below as well.

Option BBelow are the traditional items included in such a basket which gather up the whole story of Christ’s Passion in their symbolism.  You may decorate the basket with a candle, greens, and embroidered cloth.

  1. Paska – A sweet yeast bread rich in eggs and butter symbolic of Christ himself, the true bread.  Paska is traditionally round in shape, decorated with a dough braid around the perimeter and an ornamental cross in the center which marks the means of Christ’s death.
  2. Baked Ham – Symbolic of the great joy and abundance of God’s grace shown in Christ.  Lamb or Veal may also be chosen.
  3. Kobasa – A spicy, garlicky, smoked pork sausage indicative of God’s favor and generosity.
  4. Red Beet vinaigrette with Horseradish (or just horseradish) – reminiscent of the suffering of Christ in color and bitterness.  Sweetened with sugar on account of the resurrection.
  5. Salt – necessary for flavor and a reminder of Christians to be delightful servants in the world.
  6. Butter – Often artfully displayed.  Symbolic of the goodness of Christ. (Butter makes things better!)
  7. Cheese – A reminder for Christians to live a life of balance and moderation.  The cheese is often creamed and presented in a similar way to the butter.
  8. Hard-boiled Eggs – Jesus breaks forth from the tomb as a chick breaks from its shell.  The eggs may be decorated as a sign of how the resurrection transforms the tomb into a place where life is celebrated.
“Taste and see that the Lord is good!”

Can you taste the Story?  Be that celebration in the spaces you live in and have a great celebration with friends and family.