This Holy Week will be so very different. We are used to gathering, celebrating and praying together as a community. We are physically and spiritually with many other people. This year we will still join with many others in pray but we will not be able to gather physically. Instead our ‘bubbles’ will join other ‘bubbles’ in different ways. Through the use of media such as this website, Facebook and Youtube.
Our domestic Church ‘bubbles’ will become creative hubs of reflection and prayer. We hope these resources and links will help this Sacred pilgrimage of Holy Week 2020.
A first step in preparing for Holy Week is to create a prominent prayer space if you have none. If your home is full of religious articles, you may want to consider covering your icons, statues and paintings, to create a more somber or “Lenten” atmosphere as we do in our churches.
- Click here to print the Daily Readings for Holy Week and for the month of April
- Click here on “How to Celebrate the Liturgy of the Word” at home with Family.
- Click here for Daniel Schutte’s Songs of Praise celebration of the mysteries of the Easter Triduum in our domestic churches, our homes.
- Activity to do: Make your Hot Cross Buns recipe here
Although Palm Sunday has passed you might still like to commemorate Holy Week with palms.
Thursday of Holy Week
Daniel Schutte’s song suggestions for Holy Thursday
Reflections and Music
- A Gregorian Chant for Holy Thursday – Ubi Caritas et Amor (Where Charity and Love Prevail)
- The Last Supper and the Primacy of Peter – Dr Brant Pitre you tube video
How we can Celebrate Holy Thursday from our domestic Church
- Learn about Holy Thursday from the video
- Have a large family-style supper or re-enact the Last Supper with bread, grape juice (or wine!). For an added challenge try to include some foods that Jesus and the disciples would have been familiar with and may have even had at the Last Supper.
- Have your own foot washing. Here is a Foot Washing Prayer to use.
- Holy Thursday celebrates both the Institution of the Eucharist and the Institution of the Ministerial Priesthood. Discuss the priesthood with your children and pray for the priests at your parish and all the priests who have died in the past year, especially those who have died in the pandemic. Click here for some ideas on how to foster vocations in your household.
- We won’t be able to stay with Jesus in our churches tonight but try to spend an hour with him after Mass for the Adorations. If you have a garden or outdoor area, sit outside and imagine yourself in the garden with Jesus. Wait with him in the Garden. Follow him when he is arrested. Pray for him as he is tried. Wait for him to emerge to be crucified.
- Don’t forget before Holy Thursday’s Sacred Liturgy and Adoration starts, make time to prepare your home for Good Friday— a day of fasting, abstinence and mourning. Set your Sacred space, ‘Wood of the Cross’, Liturgy of the Word readings/prayers/songs, your Veneration settings, all be ready for tomorrow. We are reminded that we too must prepare our hearts and mind from tonight till Easter Sunday.
Evening Prayer for Holy Thursday
The Liturgy of the Hours grew out of the monastic tradition. Along with Mass it has formed part of the Church’s public worship for many years. On any given day throughout the world priests, religious and laity either as individuals or in small groups pray what is often referred to as ‘The Office’. The prayers are set and center on those great prayers of God’s people the Psalms. This prayer is universal intended for the needs of the whole world.
This Holy Thursday you are invited to pray in this tradition using the Evening Prayer of Holy Thursday. You will be joining with the thousands around the world in many places, spaces and languages praying together. Evening prayer centers on thanks. Click on the picture for the pdf or here for PowerPoint version.
More Liturgy of the Hour / Adoration Prayer Suggestions
After the Liturgy of the Eucharist, the priest will return the Blessed Sacrament to the tabernacle as there will be no altars of repose with adoration this year. The Mass concludes with the Prayer after Communion. There is no final blessing; we instead remain in a state of worship—the three days, the triduum—are as one complete Mass.
As we won’t be able to stay with Jesus in our churches tonight, but try to spend an hour or two with Christ after Mass for the Adorations. If you have a garden or outdoor area, sit outside and imagine yourself in the garden with Jesus. Wait with him in the Garden. Follow him when he is arrested. Pray for him as he is tried. Wait for him to emerge to be crucified. Remember it is the Church’s tradition that adorations cease at midnight, and from this moment and for the whole of Good Friday, everything in our home should be ‘silent’. There is minimal music, no laughter, fasting is its utmost, ideally no social interactions whether physically or virtually on the internet, except lots of praying and reflections.
It is preferred that we all prepare ourselves on Thursday for our Friday prayers, with our prayer resources as much as possible, if minimising internet time (except for the Sacred Liturgy of Good Friday).
Other Prayers to do during Adoration
- Pray the Rosary
- Pray the Chaplet – Divine Mercy
- Better, stay in silence, light a candle at your sacred space, and pray, meditate, reflect.
- Prepare a schedule of the people in your family who will stay awake in prayer before your altar of sacred space.
Good Friday of Holy Week
- Read online here
- Listen online here
- A Prayer guide How to Celebrate Good Friday at home
- Stations of the Cross for Children
Reflections and Music
- Some musicals to listen to, better still easy to learn and sing without online.
- The Cruelty of the Cross part 1 – Dr Brant Pitre you tube video
- The Cruelty of the Cross part 2 – Dr Brant Pitre YouTube video
- The Cruelty of the Cross part 3 – Dr Brant Pitre YouTube video
How we can Celebrate Good Friday from our domestic Church
- Good Friday is a day of abstinence (no meat!) and fasting (one meal and two “small meals” which don’t add up to the one meal). Children below the age of reason, seniors and the infirm or ill are exempt from fasting.
- Learn more about Good Friday by watching this video from Catholic Online.
- Pray the Stations of the Cross at home, as if you are in the Church. You can pray together, even appointing a cross bearer (crucifer) and a leader – see our Stations of the Cross prayer guide below.
- Pray the Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary.
- Begin the Divine Mercy Chaplet (find information here how to recite this prayer)
- Spend time in silence.
- Watch on Freeview SHINE TV channel 25, or SHINE SKYTV channel 201 for our reflection liturgy at 8:30am
- Watch our livestream of Good Friday 3:00pm service online from our website here.
- Venerate the Cross in your home – make your own “Wood of the Cross”. Or use your sacred statue of Christ on the Cross.
- Read the Passion Gospel in parts with your family.
- Get up early and pray your own candlelit services that you are familiar with.
- Spend time learning about the corporal and spiritual works of mercy.
- Learn to sing a Good Friday song or two: the Stabat Mater, Were You There, O Sacred Head, Surrounded, etc.
- Watch more videos on “Holy Week: Good Friday” from Catholic Breakfast to learn more about the day – before Friday.
Stations of the Cross Prayer for the Family
This is a silent video. It invites you to walk with Jesus – His journey to the Cross, silently reflecting on the events and praying. At each station there is a minutes pause. You are invited to pray slowly. Ideally this prayerful reflection is celebrated in the morning and before the 3:00 PM liturgy on the Veneration of the Cross.
Some of Daniel Schutte’s song suggestions for Good Friday that you can use during your Mass prayers at home.
Saturday Vigil Night of Holy Week
He is Risen! Alleluia! Alleluia!
Please note there will be no Saturday Vigil Mass as it is not possible to have one.
We will watch and wait.
We give suggestions below on what you can still do to celebrate.
Follow Daniel Schutte’s prayerful songs of praise, and the Readings below.
On Holy Saturday the Church waits at the Lord’s tomb in prayer and fasting, meditating on his Passion and on his Descent into Hell, and awaiting his Resurrection. The Church abstains from the Sacrifice of the Mass, with the Sacred table left bare until the solemn Vigil.
Ordinarily the Easter Vigil starts with the lighting of a fire outside the church. Because there are no public celebrations of the Vigil this year, there will be no Easter fires. The Mass will begin simply with the lighting of the Paschal Candle and the singing of the Exsultet. You can watch a video discussing the Easter Vigil.
Biblical video on the Day of Resurrection vs Day of Creation – Dr Brant Pitre
How can we observe Holy Saturday at home.
- Observe silence in the home.
- If you listen to music today, spend some time with the De Profundis. or a favourite of yours.
- Fast and pray!
- Listen and sing along prayerfully to the Exultet – The prayer over Darkness that is held at the Liturgy of the Light ceremony at the beginning of the Mass.
- Reflect on a world without Jesus. This is especially meaningful this year when so many are deprived of the sacraments during the virus
- Don’t indulge in any entertainments like video games or social media.
- Prepare your sacred space for the Easter Vigil – candles, white cloths, Cross, flower decorations, prayer and music sheets, part takers of your family members to the prayer parts, and your food and drinks for the celebrations after the vigil mass.
- Watch the Vigil Mass online from the Vatican website here
- The Vigil Mass readings tell the story of God’s Plan of Salvation. You can learn more by doing research online on the subject.
- Follow our prayer guide below in ways you can celebrate.
How you can celebrate Holy Saturday Vigil Prayers from Home
Easter Sunday – Resurrection of the Lord
- Read online here
- Listen online here
- A Prayer Guide How to Celebrate Easter Sunday at Home with Family
- Intercession / Prayers of the Faithful’s for the COVID-19 pandemic to use for Sunday Family Prayers.
Reflections and activities
- Use this Easter Sunday Liturgy of the Hour as a resource for your home.
- Here is a Kid’s activity resource for the Sunday games. Enjoy!