The following news release was issued by Diocese of Ft. Wayne–South Bend:
Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades Liturgical Schedule for Holy Week 2012
- Sunday April 1st, Palm Sunday Mass, Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. 11:30 AM Fort Wayne
- Monday April 2nd, Chrism Mass, Saint Matthew’s Cathedral. 7:30 PM South Bend
- Tuesday April 3rd, Chrism Mass, Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. 7:30 PM Fort Wayne
- Thursday April 5th, Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord’s Supper, Saint Matthew’s Cathedral. 7:30 PM South Bend
- Friday April 6th, Celebration of the Passion of the Lord, Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. 1:00 PM FW
- Saturday April 7th, Easter Vigil Mass, Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. 9:00 PM Fort Wayne
- Sunday April 8th, Easter Mass, Saint Joseph County Jail. 1:00 PM South Bend
Holy Week is the week which precedes the great festival of the Resurrection on Easter Sunday, and which consequently is used to commemorate the Passion of Christ and the events which immediately led up to it.
Palm Sunday Holy Week begins on Palm Sunday. We begin the Mass of Palm Sunday with the commemoration of the solemn entrance of the Lord into Jerusalem. We carry the blessed palms and sing Hosanna like the great crowd that welcomed Jesus into the holy city. As the liturgy continues, we focus more on the Passion of the Lord which is the Gospel read on Palm Sunday. This is why Palm Sunday is also called Passion Sunday.
Chrism Mass On Monday and Tuesday of Holy Week, we will celebrate the Chrism Masses in our cathedrals in South Bend and Fort Wayne. I invite all to attend these beautiful liturgies during which I will bless the Oil of the Sick and the Oil of Catechumens and consecrate the Holy Chrism. At these Masses, our priests will publicly renew their priestly promises. This Mass manifests our priests’ communion with their bishop.
Holy Thursday The Sacred Paschal Triduum begins with the evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday and ends with Vespers of Easter Sunday. We celebrate during these three days the passing of the Lord from this world to His Father. We celebrate the greatest mysteries of our redemption. At the Mass of the Lord’s Supper, we especially commemorate the institution of the Holy Eucharist and of the priesthood. According to tradition, the washing of the feet is performed, representing the service and charity of Christ who came “not to be served, but to serve” (Matthew 20:28). At the end of this Mass, the Blessed Sacrament is carried through the church to the place of reservation.
Good Friday On Good Friday, the Church meditates on the passion and death of Our Lord. This is the only day of the year when the celebration of Holy Mass is prohibited. It is a day of Penance in which we are obliged to observe the laws of abstinence and fasting. In the afternoon, the celebration of the Lord’s Passion takes place. It is composed of three parts: the Liturgy of the Word, the Adoration of the Cross, and Holy Communion (which was consecrated the evening before). The Chants or the Reproaches sung during the Adoration of the Cross help us to enter into the mystery of Christ’s death on the cross, not only with our minds, but also in our hearts. Every Good Friday, we listen to the Passion according to the Gospel of John.
The Easter Vigil On Holy Saturday, we are in a sense waiting at the Lord’s tomb. It is a day to continue meditating on Christ’s Passion and Death and especially his descent into hell. The Mass is not offered until nightfall when the Church celebrates the Easter Vigil. The Easter Vigil is “the greatest and most noble of all solemnities.” On this holy night, the Church waits for the Resurrection and celebrates the sacraments of initiation. We celebrate the Christian initiation of the adults who have been preparing to receive the new life of Christ and enter into his Body, the Church. After their Baptism, they will be confirmed and receive their first Holy Communion at the Easter Vigil.
Easter Sunday Easter is the principal feast of the ecclesiastical year. Leo I (Serino xlvii in Exodum) calls it the greatest feast (festum festorum), and says that Christmas is celebrated only in preparation for Easter. It is the center of the greater part of the ecclesiastical year.
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Editor’s Note: 1) Text delineating the liturgical celebrations were taken from multiple sources and are submitted for guidance purposes only. The primary source of the text was taken from Bishop Kevin Rhoades weekly column as published in Today’s Catholic News.
2) The Easter Mass being celebrated at the St. Joseph County Jail is not truly meant to be photographed or videos taken. Due to the nature of the facility and the respect demanded by law for those incarcerated, Bishop Rhoades will be available for interviews after the mass concludes.