Holy Week begins this Sunday with our celebration of Palm Sunday. I would like to take a moment to invite all of our parishioners to participate as fully as possible in the celebrations that will mark Holy Week, the holiest week of the Church’s year. Mass on Holy Thursday is celebrated at 7:00 PM, which concludes with the Procession of the Blessed Sacrament to the Altar of Repose in the Atrium. Everyone is invited to spend time in prayer “in the garden” with our Lord. The time of adoration will conclude with the praying of Night Prayer at 10:00 PM. Good Friday’s celebration of the Passion of Our Lord begins at 12:30 PM. Stations of the Cross will be prayed on Good Friday evening at 6:30 PM. On Holy Saturday we have the traditional Blessing of the Easter Food in the Atrium at 9:00 AM. The Easter Vigil will begin at 8:00 PM that night in the Atrium Gardens. Masses for Easter Day are celebrated at 7:30 AM, 9:00 AM and 11:00 AM.
Confessions will be heard during Holy Week on Monday morning at 9:00 AM and again on Tuesday afternoon at Noon. Please note that confessions will not be heard on Good Friday afternoon or evening, so please plan accordingly.
The Easter Season will bring with it a multitude of celebrations. The first that will take place is on Saturday, April 22nd when one of our own parishioners, Mr. William Arnold will be ordained to the diaconate by Bishop Jeffrey Haines at the Cathedral. He will be followed by another one of our parishioners, Mr. John LoCoco later on this year. The transitional diaconate is a step on the path to the priesthood. The soon-to-be Deacon Arnold will be with us on Sunday, April 23rd at the 11:00 Mass as we celebrate this important milestone in his life and in the life of the parish and of the Church.
On April 23rd we will celebrate Divine Mercy Sunday with a Holy Hour with Adoration and Benediction beginning at 3:00 PM in the afternoon. Confessions will be heard as well during this hour. The celebrations will pick up again the following weekend when we will be privileged to have Bishop Jeffrey Haines with us to celebrate the Sacrament of Confirmation with our parish teens at 10:00 AM on Saturday, April 29th. Please note that because of this the 8:00 Saturday morning Mass will be celebrated as usual, but confessions will not be heard after the Mass in order to prepare the church for Confirmation. The following weekend we will celebrate First Communion, on Sunday, May 7th at 1:30 PM. Please pray for all those who will be celebrating the Easter Sacraments beginning at the Easter Vigil with our RCIA candidates and catechumen!
Saturday, May 13th marks the 100th Anniversary of the first apparition of Our Lady at Fatima. Because of the significance of this celebration our annual May Crowning will take place on that evening, Saturday, May 13th in conjunction with the evening Mass. May 13th will also see our first weddings of the year taking place – please be sure to keep in prayer all of those couples who will be married over the course of this coming year. Finally the Easter Season will also see the graduation of our 8th Graders from our parish school on Friday, June 2nd – please keep them in prayer as well as they prepare for the next step of their journey into adulthood.
There are so many graces available to us during this Holy Week and in the coming Easter Season, may the Lord in His mercy help us to receive them and seek them out!