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The Eucharist, cross and resurrection

The Easter triduum – three days commemorating the death and resurrection of Jesus, includes Holy Thursday’s Mass of the Lord’s Supper, Good Friday’s celebration of the Lord’s Passion, the Easter Vigil and Easter Sunday Masses.

 

 Photo by John Bosco/Staff.

Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday (commemorating the institution of the Eucharist)

Presentation of holy oils blessed earlier in Holy Week at the Chrism Mass

Washing of feet, commemorating Jesus’ act of service to the apostles and his direction for them to do likewise for others

Liturgy of the Eucharist and distribution of Communion

The solemn procession of the holy Eucharist to an altar of repose, and adoration of the holy Eucharist by the faithful

Stripping of the main altar, representing Christ entering into his passion and being stripped of his garments

 

Celebration of the Lord’s Passion on Good Friday

Priests’ and deacons’ reverencing the altar, lying prostrate or kneeling before the altar, representing "the abasement of earthly man" and the grief and sorrow of the church

Liturgy of the Word, including the reading of the Passion

Processing, unveiling and veneration of the cross

Distribution of holy Communion

 

 

CNS Photo/Paul Haring

 

 

 

Easter Vigil (takes place after nightfall on Holy Saturday)

The service of light, including procession and blessing of the Easter candle and the lighting of candles throughout the congregation representing Christ’s light

Liturgy of the Word, including several Scripture readings telling the salvation story

Liturgy of Baptism, including blessing of the holy water and baptism of the Elect entering the church

Celebration of Confirmation of all seeking full communion with the church

Liturgy of the Eucharist, including first Communion of the newly baptized and candidates seeking full communion with the church

 

Easter Sunday Masses (celebrating the risen Christ)

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