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The Christian should tremble…

“Forty minutes of prime time in solitary prayer, usually divided into two twenty-minute periods, before a symbol of the crucified Christ is the most effective discipline for making conscious contact with the living God and his liberating love. Lamentably, Christian piety has prettified the passionate God of Golgotha; Christian art has banalized unspeakable outrage into dignified jewelry; Christian worship has sentimentalized monstrous scandal into sacred pageant. We have corrupted our sense of reality by sentimentalizing it. Pious imagination, romantic preaching, and lifeless or raucous worship overshadow the real Jesus. The Christian should tremble and the whole community quake during the veneration of the Cross of Good Friday.”
(Brennan Manning – Reflections for Ragamuffins)

I am not sure where I came across that quote recently, but it seemed appropriate as we begin this holiest week in the church’s calendar. The challenge of Holy Week is to make the journey with Jesus, not as spectators, but as participants. On Palm Sunday, we are invited to ‘to follow our Lord with a lively faith’, both in our individual as well as communal moments of prayer. So the church will gather to celebrate this journey and to take in anew the horror, the suffering and the wonder of it all. The schedule for our common prayer is as follows:

Holy Thursday:
8:00 a.m. Morning Prayer
10:00 a.m. Chrism Mass –at the Cathedral
7:00 p.m. Mass of the Lord’s Supper
Adoration begins after Mass
11:30 p.m. Night Prayer

Good Friday
8:00 am: Morning Prayer
3:00 pm: Stations of the Cross
7:00 pm: Celebration of the Lord’s Passion

Holy Saturday
8:00 am: Morning Prayer
8:00 pm: Easter Vigil

Easter Sunday
8:00 a.m. Mass
11:00 a.m. Mass

May our prayer indeed be reason for trembling, in fear and in awe before such amazing love.

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