Visiting Churches on Holy Thursday

As we enter into the three days we know as the Triduum—beginning with Holy Thursday—many Catholics will once again take part in an ancient ritual of visiting churches (the Visita Iglesia) after the Evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper—a local “mini-pilgrimage.” The Evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper ends with a procession of the Blessed Sacrament, which is then placed in reposition (on a special altar) so that the faithful may remain in vigil until […]

Learning about the Last Supper

As we approach Holy Week, I like to focus my class on the events we recall on Palm Sunday and during the Triduum. That means that one of the chapters we cover during this time of year is the one on Eucharist and the Last Supper (Finding God, Grade 7, Chapter 16). I’m pleased to report that this was one of the most successful sessions we’ve had this year with good engagement from the young […]

Holy Thursday’s Hidden Graces

On Holy Thursday Jesus explains to his disciples that he will be leaving them: Little children, I am with you only a little longer. You will look for me, and as I told the Jews, “Where I am going, you cannot come,” so now I say it to you. (John 13:33) These are hard words to hear. Why would Jesus ever remove himself from our lives? And yet, we know from our own experiences that […]

Holy Thursday, 2014

Here are some pics from Holy Thursday, Mass of the Lord’s Supper at St. Julie Billiart Parish in Tinley Park, IL, followed by visits to Altars of Reposition at 3 other parishes as part of our tradition of visiting churches on Holy Thursday evening. Mass of the Lord’s Supper – Incensing the altar Presentation of the Holy Oils Washing of Feet Transfer of the Blessed Sacrament Altars of Reposition: St. Julie, St. Alexander, Sacred Heart […]

Holy Thursday, Mass of the Lord’s Supper

Last evening, my wife and I attended Holy Thursday Mass at Ascension Parish in Oak Park, IL. What a rich, beautiful, and moving experience! A profound beginning to the Triduum experience! The Washing of the Feet is particularly profound since all in the congregation are invited to come forward and wash one another’s feet. Families often come up together to wash one another’s feet. Joanne and I take advantage of this opportunity to wash each […]

Easter Blessings!

I wish you a very Blessed Easter season!!! May the grace of the Risen Lord be with you always! Experiencing the Triduum was a blessing as always. Holy Thursday and Good Friday were at St. Julie Billiart parish in Tinley Park and the Easter Vigil was at St. Clement in Chicago. All were celebrated with great reverence, style, and grace, and the the richness of the sacramentality of these days filled all of my senses. […]

40 Ideas for 40 Days – Lenten Activities: Triduum Triptychs

Here’s another Lenten activity that is a good opportunity for catechists to prepare young people for Holy Week. It is from the Christ Our Life series (grade 8). Triduum Triptychs Have the young people fold a sheet of construction paper into three equal parts. While the paper is folded, have them cut the top of it into the shape of an arch. At the top of each section, have them write the name of the […]

Catholics Doing Seder Meals

As we approach Holy Week, it is not unusual to see Catholic parishes, often the religious education programs, hosting a Seder Meal – the ritual meal that Jews celebrate to mark Passover. The intention, it would seem, is to show the connection between Eucharist and Passover. It is true that there is an intimate connection between the Eucharist and the Passover. I would venture to say that one cannot fully grasp the Catholic understanding of […]