& Why We Gather
Have you ever been present for the last few moments of a loved one's life? You can often sense what was most important to someone by what their last words were, or how they spent their final moments before passing.
We can learn so much about Jesus by observing his last days on Earth. In Christianity, we call the last few days before Jesus' death, and the days leading up to His glorious resurrection, "Holy Week."
Holy Week Breakdown
Palm Sunday: This day is most commonly commemorated with the image of Jesus riding into Jerusalem on a donkey to observe Passover. He was greeted with crowds waving palm branches and crying ‘Hosanna! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed is the coming kingdom of our ancestor David! Hosanna in the highest heaven!’ (Mark 11:9-10).
Holy Wednesday (A.K.A. Spy Wednesday): This day is often marked with a service of Tenebrae (Latin for ‘darkness’ or ‘shadows’) which features a symbolic gradual extinguishing of candles on a candelabrum, creating the sense of growing darkness as the day of Jesus' betrayal and crucifixion approaches.
Maundy Thursday: This day marks the Last Supper that Jesus shares with his disciples, his betrayal by Judas Iscariot, and his arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane. The word Maundy comes from the latin, 'mandatum', or 'command' which refers to the instructions Jesus gave his disciples at the Last Supper to love one another as He had loved them. Jesus would beautifully display this love through His sacrifice to be made the following day.
Good Friday: Good Friday commemorates Jesus’ trial before Pontius Pilate, His sentence of death, torture, crucifixion and burial. Christians worldwide gather on this day to honor the sacrifice Jesus made on the cross.
Holy Saturday (A.K.A. Easter Vigil): This is the traditional end of Lent, and is often celebrated with a late-night Easter Vigil service (vigil is defined as 'a period of keeping awake during the time usually spent asleep, especially to keep watch or pray'), commemorating Jesus' female disciples who kept watch over His tomb at night. Part two of this gathering takes place on Easter morning, with the joyful celebration of Jesus' resurrection.
Easter Sunday: Hallelujah!!! On Easter, we celebrate our Risen King, Jesus, who conquered the grave and was raised from the dead after three days. When He left the tomb, the earth quaked and the temple's thick veil separating commoners from the priestly quarters of the temple was torn down the middle. This is a prophetic picture of the veil of separation that was torn between God and men. Now that the price of sin had been paid, men could be restored to God and have direct access to Him without needing the temple priests to be a middle man. Now any man or woman, Jew or Gentile, slave or free, can freely commune with God and enjoy friendship with Him. A New Covenant was made at the cross, one with better promises, including the gift of the Holy Spirit! Praise God! (Hebrews 8:6; Acts 2)
⬦ ⬦ ⬦
Join us for three distinct services on Palm Sunday, Good Friday, and Easter Sunday, as we honor and remember our Savior's great love and sacrifice for us, our restoration to the Father, and the promises that are now available to us in the New Covenant. Jesus did what was most important to Him in the final moments of His life and death: He restored us to the Father, giving us unlimited access to Himself through the Holy Spirit, and He restored us to each other, commanding us to love one another as He loves us.
Join us on Palm Sunday, April 10th, at 9:00am or 11:00am for a special morning with Voices of Hope as we remember Jesus' arrival to Jerusalem on the donkey, where he was greeted with immense adoration.
Gather with us on Good Friday, April 15th, at 1:00pm to honor and remember the grueling sacrifice that Jesus made for us, ultimately giving His life as perfect atonement for our sins.
And finally, bring the whole family Easter Sunday, April 17th, at 9:00am, 10:00am or 11:00am as we celebrate the glorious resurrection of our risen King!
We look forward to gathering with you during Holy Week to honor Jesus, remember the price He paid, and all that He made available to us at the cross.