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Magazine (Archive) - April 2007
Easter seems to have come round rather quickly this year, and indeed it is nearly the earliest it can be.During the end of Lent and beginning of Easter there are many different services each designed to help us reflect on the story of Salvation.
This year in Holy Week we will be adding a few new opportunities to reflect on Christ’s passion.Before the APCMs (on Monday for St. Matthew, and Tuesday for St. Luke) there will be a service of Holy Communion at 7 pm, and another on Wednesday evening at 7.30pm.The Maundy Thursday service will be at 7.30 (at both St. Matthew and St. Luke) followed by an hours’ vigil during which the gospel of the watch will be read.
On Good Friday we will have, as we did last year, a 9am Morning Prayer (BCP) with litany at St. Matthew, Stations of the Cross at 10am at St. Luke, and The Liturgy of the Day at 2pm at St. Matthew – this being the main service of the day as we gather to remember the last hour of Jesus on the cross before he dies.In addition to these services there will be a new service at 11.30am.It occurred to me last year that amidst all the things we usually do on Good Friday there was nothing for the younger members of the congregation; so the service at 11.30 will be an all age service that lasts about half an hour.
Last year we held a Vigil Service on Easter Eve.This was very poorly attended, so this year there will not be a vigil service on the Saturday.One of the most moving parts (for me at any rate) of the Easter Eve service is the Service of Light; and as this is an integral part of the Easter Liturgies we will begin the 8.15 service at St. Matthew’s and the 9.30 at St. Luke’s by lighting the Pascal Candle and reciting the Exultet – the ancient Hymn of Resurrection.
Holy Week and Easter can be hard work, and that’s no bad thing, each of the services has a different focus allowing us to enter more fully into the Passion of Christ and to reflect on the enormity of Love that God has for us.I know that not everyone
will be able to get to all the services during Holy Week, and you may be wondering which would be the best to go to; so, if you can only get to two services I would suggest Maundy Thursday and one on Good Friday as these are a good preparation for Easter Day, enabling you to enter fully into the joy of the resurrection.
Also during Holy Week there will be two special services at the Cathedral.The 1st will be on Monday morning at 10.30 am during which the oils used for Baptism, Confirmation and Healing will be blessed by the Bishop and everyone present will have the opportunity to reaffirm their vocation.Although the service is primarily for all the ordained ministers in the diocese it is open to everyone, and if you are in Manchester on the 2nd I would encourage you to go if you can.Then on Thursday the Queen will be at the cathedral for the Maundy Service (unfortunately this is ticket only).During the Service, 81 men and 81 women from Greater Manchester (representing the Queen's age) will receive gifts of specially-minted Maundy money from the Queen. The recipients are all retired pensioners in recognition of their service both to the Church and their community.We are honoured that a member of our congregation has been awarded this tribute in recognition of all that he has done for the church and the community over a number of years in various ways.Congratulations Denis, we hope you enjoy the day.
I wish you all a very blessed Holy Week and Easter and look forward to celebrating with you the heart of the Christian faith that “God so loved the world that he gave his only son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but have eternal life.” (Jn 3.16)
Yours in Christ
Creation date : 16/04/2007 - 21:36