Lent and Easter

We journey together through Lent and Holy Week to Easter

Lent: a 40-day Fast

Lent is a 40-day journey from Ash Wednesday to Good Friday -- the ultimate challenge Jesus posed to the world and the world's response.

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It is thus a time for all of us to take a look into the depth of our souls and to find there a deeper enbrace of sacred grace at the heart of life. This all sets the stage for the Easter story: resurrection to life beyond life.

The 40 days of Lent include only six days a week, excluding Sundays, because it was originally practised as a fast. Sundays were excluded from the fast because it is the Lord's Day. Today, there are different ways to observe Lent. At Roberson-Wesley, this includes the following.

Ash Wednesday
2018 Feb 14, 7:00 pm

Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of Lent. Please join us for a time of reflection, worship and ritual.

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Its roots lie in the ancient Jewish festival of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement. Atonement means "at-one-ment." If we are to be at one with God, with creation, with each other, we must face honestly who we are, make our confession, and open ourselves to the supportive power of God and our faith community in the Lenten struggle for new life. So Ash Wednesday is a day of honest confession, commitment and healing.

Holy Week

The centre of Christian faith is the passion, death and resurrection of Christ. Consequently the celebrations of Holy Week, beginning with Palm Sunday and concluding with Easter Sunday are the central worship event of the Christian Year.

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Of this week, the 72 hour period from Maundy Thursday evening through to Easter Sunday evening is the most significant. Known as the Triduum, these three days are not so much a period in which we celebrate a series of disconnected worship services; rather, the Maundy Thursday service, the Good Friday service, the Sunrise Service and the Easter Sunday service are joined together as one long worship time during which we go home for rest breaks. Together, the services of Holy Week are a journey with Jesus in his last week. As we come together in prayer and reflection from Maundy Thursday through to Easter Sunday, may these three days be a time of both reflection and renewal for us all.

Palm Sunday
2018 Mar 25, (Sunday) 10:30 am

This service marks the beginning of Holy Week with the exuberant palm processional, recalling Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem. In contrast to the joyful opening mood, the service moves toward a more sombre ending, leading into the passion (suffering) mood of Holy Week. The journey to the cross and the empty tomb has begun.

Ash Wednesday: the mark of the ashes
Gifts of Hope, Palm Sunday 2011
Easter vigil
Easter worship celebration

Maundy Thursday
2018 Mar 29, (Thursday) 7:00 pm

The name Maundy Thursday comes from the Latin mandatum, commandment. In this service we gather to remember Jesus' last meal with his disciples before his arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane. The celebration of communion in remembrance of the last supper, is the centre-piece of this service. There will be special music provided by soloists and reflective music for meditation as we prepare for Good Friday, which continues the story of the last days of Jesus life.

Good Friday
2018 Mar 30, (Friday) 10:30 am

The central focus of this experience is the story of the crucifixtion, itself. It is a time to experience the pain, sorrow and brokenness of life, in the context of the larger story of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus.

Easter Vigil
2018 Mar 31, (Saturday) 7:00 pm

As the sun descends on Good Friday, we begin the second day of the Triduum. We reflect and pray on our own as we recall the deep grief of Jesus' followers, especially those who carried his lifeless body to the tomb. We recall this together as we begin the vigil in darkness.

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As the day fades and the night comes, we move into the third day of the Triduum. As we recall the sacred story, we celebrate how death is transformed into life, and darkness gives way to light. We kindle new fire and light our new Christ candle. We give thanks for the gift of baptism through which we share in Jesus? risen life. We will begin the night with an hour long service where the vigil will begin. Throughout the night youth and adults will be invited to hold vigil in the sanctuary for as long as they like and at whatever hour they feel called to be in the sanctuary. Some may choose to come to the service and stay for a while longer and pray in the silence and darkness of the sanctuary, while others may choose to come in later. We will ensure that at least one person is always present to the Christ candle in the sanctuary until sunrise the next morning. Watch for the sign up sheet in memorial hall.

Easter Sunrise
2018 Apr 1, (Sunday) 7:30 am

Location: Outdoors on the Promenade, 100 Avenue & 121 Street

We will gather together in the light of the sun newly risen to greet the new day. As a faith community we will celebrate the resurrection in the morning light and announce again the Easter story, the Good News that Jesus Christ has risen. Then we will gather at the church after the service to share breakfast together.

Easter Sunday
2018 Apr 1, (Sunday) 10:30 am

We gather to celebrate the highlight of our third day of the Triduum with an intergenerational (Whole Family) style of worship, with the children and youth remaining with the rest of the congregation throughout the service. For the joyful music of Easter, the organ and Choir of Robertson-Wesley are complemented by the bright accents of brass, all brought together by music director Tammy-Jo Mortensen.