Liturgy at Home: Holy Week and the Triduum in a Time of Pandemic

UPDATE Good Friday – I tried rehearsing Stations of the Cross live in the garden; sadly it just didn’t work, there was no way of moving the camera (iPhone on a tripod) in a way that wouldn’t have made anyone watching seasick. So no lies team of Stations but I will livestream Compline each night at 7pm Friday and Saturday.

UPDATE 6 April, 15:30 – please note there will now be no Eucharist of the Day in the Oratory, I am leading worship for the parish on Zoom at that time. In addition to the liturgies below I will livestream Compline each day at 7pm BST except for Maundy Thursday when Compline will complete the Watch at midnight.

Several people have asked what I intend to do for the liturgical services of Holy Week. I had been due to preach at St George’s, Paris and am sad not now to be with Fr Mark and the people there. I normally ‘preach’ Holy Week as a guest preacher so I rarely have to organise the liturgies of the week or the Triduum, although I have done a few vacancies over the years and when I was a parish priest always enjoyed working out what would work and what wouldn’t. here’s a picture of the booklet from the last time I had sole responsibility which was at St Faith’s, Landport in 1997:

I have been live-streaming the Eucharist each day from my little Oratory in the garden over the last few days. I am so deeply moved to be joined by people, some I know and am fond of, some strangers to me. I shall continue doing this during Holy Week at the following times:

Palm Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday: Eucharist at 6:30am BST (GMT+1)

Maundy Thursday: Eucharist of the Lord’s Supper 8pm, I will keep a Watch until midnight and sing Compline at midnight. Eucharist and Compline but not the Watch streamed.

Good Friday – Stations of the Cross 10am

Good Friday: Liturgy of the Day at 2pm

Easter Day: Paschal Vigil and First Eucharist of Easter: 3:30am;

In terms of what I will do, those who tune in to the stream from the Oratory seem to appreciate the simplicity and silence. Others will be looking for something very different and there are many places offering sophisticated audio-visual material, and grander liturgies. Which is excellent. For this domestic Oratory as simple as possible seems to be best. For the Eucharistic liturgy the rite will be just as I have been doing and as described here.

Normally for a weekday Eucharist in the Oratory I just wear a stole over my usual clothes; to mark the solemnity of this week I will wear the usual vestments on Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday and at the Easter Eucharists and an Alb and stole on Good Friday at the Liturgy.

As you can see there is no blessing of the palms or procession, no Easter fire, no veneration of the Cross. Times and Seasons (T&S) gives different sets of readings for the Vigil with themes. I have chosen ‘Women in Salvation’. I will sort out what I am going to do at the Stations of the Cross on Good Friday morning in due course and post here when that is done. It will be very simple indeed. The Vigil will start early and be very leisurely which I have done before and works really well, with a rather informal feel. I’m hoping I can do this in the garden at a little bonfire. Vestments put on only at the move into the Oratory for the first Eucharist of Easter.

Music

I love to sing and I love the psalms. So alongside a few simple chants from Taizé and the Iona Community there will be psalms with sung refrains, from Belmont Abbey (An English Gradual, Fr Alan Rees OSB), Br Reginald SSF (Lent, Holy Week and Easter – Services and Prayers). I won’t sing any hymns. I am not a great singer and singing hymns unaccompanied is pretty tough going. On Monday to Wednesday the Chants (sung with verses of psalmody) will be (Mon – Wed Introit Belmont 35, Psalm Belmont 44, Concluding Chant Belmont 42). Other music see below:

Palm Sunday

  • Introit Reginald 9
  • Commemoration of the Lord’s Entry Into Jerusalem (T&S 269 – 271 omitting prayer over the palms and procession
  • Liturgy of the Word – Psalm Belmont 35
  • Intercession T&S 272-273
  • Eucharistic liturgy continues as usual Concluding Chant Belmont 30

Maundy Thursday

  • Introit Belmont 52
  • Penitential verses T&S 294
  • Psalm Belmont 111
  • Intercessions T&S 299
  • Preparation of the Gifts T&S 300
  • Eucharistic liturgy continues as usual
  • Concluding Chant Lamentations (traditional)
  • John 17
  • Watch until midnight before the Blessed Sacrament
  • Midnight Compline: traditional plainsong

Good Friday Stations of the Cross (10am) more detail later.

Good Friday – Liturgy of the Day

  • No Introit
  • Gathering and Liturgy of the Word T&S 307 – 308 Psalm Belmont 181 (The Passion ends at Jn 19: 37)
  • Prayer around the Cross – Jesus remember me, (Taizé), Belmont 178 verses from psalm 26, poetry and silence
  • The Solemn Intercession at the Cross
  • T&S 316 -318
  • Holy Communion T&S 319 – 320 Gospel of the Burial of Christ (Jn 19: 38-42

The Paschal VigilTimes & Seasons Pattern B ( 3:30 am – 5:30 am)

  • T&S Pattern B – outside (if not raining, or by the fireplace), at a fire
  • Introduction T&S 354 –
  • Readings T&S 373 (Theme ‘Women in Salvation’) Refrains for psalms, selected verses, from Sunday Psalms, Kevin Mayhew
  • 1 Genesis 1 Psalm 104
  • 2 Genesis 3 Psalm 51
  • 3 Exodus 12 Psalm 77
  • 4 Exodus 14 Canticle
  • 5 Ruth 1 Psalm 61
  • 6 1 Samuel 1 Canticle CWDP p 572
  • 7 Proverbs 8 Canticle CWDP p 599
  • 8 Isaiah 66 Psalm 113
  • 9 Daniel 3 canticle Benedicite
  • The Paschal Candle is blessed and lit T&S 355
  • Move to the Oratory (5:30am)
  • Metrical Exultet T&S 358 Tune: Woodlands
  • Gloria mode viii
  • Collect
  • Liturgy of the Word Psalm Belmont 60
  • Blessing of Water Chant: Water of Life …
  • Apostles’ Creed
  • The Eucharistic Liturgy continues as usual
  • Concluding chant: Belmont 67

Eucharist of Easter Day

Usual Eucharistic Liturgy with Gloria and Creed, chants:

  • Introit Belmont 67
  • Psalm Belmont 64
  • Conclusion Belmont 56

2 thoughts on “Liturgy at Home: Holy Week and the Triduum in a Time of Pandemic

  1. Dear Father:

    What’s the link to see your live-streams? Do you use Facebook Live or another system? Is it a 5 hour time difference between you and me?

    Stephen (in NYC)

    Like

    1. Ephemeral good to hear from NY, happy memories of happier times there for me. Yes I use FB Live if you search for me on FB as Richard Peers and then scroll down you should be able to find it. And yes you are -5 our time. So a very good morning to you.

      Like

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