Holy Week

03-27-2021Weekly ReflectionFr. James Aboyi, V.C.

Welcome to the Holy Week, which begins this weekend with the celebration of Palm Sunday. This week is the peak of the Churches’ Liturgical Calendar and the most important week for us Catholics. I am glad the Pandemic is declining consistently, making it possible for us to celebrate Holy Week and Easter this year. However, you will notice that there will be a few exceptions to the Easter Liturgies this year. First of all, I thank those who have already received their vaccines. We encourage everyone to observe our parish safety protocols during the Easter Liturgies this year, especially to wear a facemask, maintain physical distance and use hand sanitizers, even if you have already received your two shots of the vaccine.

Here is what to expect during Holy Week and Easter Liturgies this year:

Palm Sunday. Palm Sunday will be celebrated in the usual way this year except we will use only the Simple Entrance for all Masses. The Palms will be provided as you enter the Church’s doors. The Mass will start with the Commemoration of the Lord’s Entrance into Jerusalem from the back of the Church. We will live-stream all the Masses. However, as is usual, Holy Communion will be offered at the Main Entrance only after the 5pm Mass on Saturday and 9am Mass on Sunday.

Chrism Mass. The Chrism Mass will be celebrated on Monday of the Holy Week, March 29th at St. Thomas the Apostle Parish in Phoenix. Only priests and Deacons are allowed to participate in the Chrism Mass this year. All the priests and Religious in the Diocese are expected to renew their vows/promise and commitments during the Mass. The Bishop will also bless the sacred oils that we use for anointing at Baptism, Confirmation and Anointing of the Sick.

Holy Thursday. The celebration of the Lord’s Supper will take place at 7 pm. The washing of feet and the procession to the Altar of Repose will be omitted this year. We will have one hour of Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament in the Church right after Mass. Holy Communion will be offered at the Main Entrance for 30 minutes following the Mass.

Good Friday. The Passion of the Lord will be celebrated at 7 pm as usual, except we will omit the Veneration of the Cross this year. Holy Communion will be offered for 30 minutes at the Main Entrance following the Passion Service.

The Easter Vigil. The Easter Vigil Liturgy will be celebrated at 7:30 pm on Saturday. Mass will be as usual this year, except we will not have any Baptisms. Holy Communion will be offered at the Main Entrance for 30 minutes following the Mass.

This is to remind everyone that the Bishop’s dispensation from Sunday and Easter obligation is still in place.

I wish everyone a Blessed Holy Week.

Fr. James