Holy Apostles Orthodox Church
345 Ridge Rd, Lansing, NY
Orthodox Church in America
Holy Week 2024

Our full schedule of Holy Week services can be found on the Monthly Calendar page. Here is a brief explanation of the services. It should be noted in general that, during Holy Week, everything is done “in anticipation” as we hurry toward the resurection. This means that, for most of the week we are doing Vespers in the morning, and the following day’s Matins in the evening.

Bridegroom Matins are served the first three evenings of Holy Week. Each day has a slightly different theme, but all emphasize the need for spiritual preparation and vigilance as we go to meet the crucified and risen Christ.

The Presanctified Liturgy has been served throughout Lent; on Wednesday morning we celebrate this cervice a final time, before we begin to focus exclusively on the events of the Passion.

Matins on Wednesday evening commemorates Christ’s Mystical Supper with his disciples, focusing especially on his washing of their feet.

Vesperal Liturgy on Thursday continues the commemoration of the Mystical Supper, but focusing more on the institution of the Eucharist.

The Passion Gospels Service, the Matins served on Thursday evening, remembers the Passion of Christ in 12 Gospel readings, with hymns reflecting mystery of Christ’s mercy in the face of humanity’s rejection.

The Royal Hours is a quiet service, with hymns and readings from the Old and New Testaments encouraging us to reflect on the theme of Christ’s Passion.

Vespers of Holy Friday, or the Burial, commemorates Joseph and Nicodemus laying Christ in the tomb, and already at this service we begin to see glimmers of the light of the Resurrection.

Lamentations, the Matins served Friday night, celebrates Christ keeping the Sabbath in the tomb bodily, but spiritually conquering Hades and setting free the dead.

The Vesperal Liturgy on Holy Saturday begins, in a quiet and subdued way, the celebration of the Resurrection that will be held with full exuberance that night. It includes many readings from the Old Testament that show the prophetic prefigurements of the Resurrection. Holy Saturday is traditionally a time for receiving converts into the Church, and this year we’ll receive two people before the Vesperal Liturgy begins.

The Paschal Vigil begins with a quiet service in which the burial-shroud is taken from the tomb to the Altar. Then all go in procession around the church with lit candles, after which the full joy of the feast breaks forth in the jubilant Matins and Divine Liturgy.

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