For the last few years, we have celebrated a Service of Tenebrae to mark Maundy Thursday and Good Friday. This year will be no different except for the delivery method: online instead of in person. The service will premiere on Facebook at 6pm on Thursday, April 9. It will remain available from that point on to share with others and to access later as your schedule allows.
The word “tenebrae” comes from the Latin meaning “darkness.” The Tenebrae is an ancient Christian Good Friday service that makes use of gradually diminishing light through the extinguishing of candles to symbolize the events of that week from the triumphant Palm Sunday entry through Jesus’ burial.
This increasing darkness symbolizes the approaching darkness of Jesus’ death and of hopelessness in the world without God. The service concludes in darkness, sometimes with a final candle, the Christ candle, carried out of the sanctuary, symbolizing the death of Jesus…The worshipers then leave in silence to ponder the impact of Christ’s death and await the coming Resurrection. (from umc.org)
In your home, as you go through the service, light your own candle and extinguish it when I extinguish the last candle. Note the moment and let it be, for you, a way of interacting even while we are distanced.
Don’t miss Holy Week; don’t rush to Easter. Let us ponder, together, our savior, crucified.