Training for the Great Vigil
From the 2007 newsletter
There seems to be a need for some training of the mind in preparation for our Easter celebrations, especially when it comes to the Great Vigil, which is the solemn service of Saturday night before Easter morning, in which we welcome the end of Lent and the coming of Easter.
One of the elements of the liturgical reform which has taken hold in many segments of Christendom is the recovery of the Great Vigil. For a very long time there was little or no concept of what the Great Vigil was, or what it was for. Indeed The Lutheran Hymnal itself has no propers listed for the Great Vigil. There’s only a little reference to “Holy Saturday, Easter Eve,” having only a collect and two readings, the Gospel being a reference to the burial of Jesus (St. Matthew 27). So even there, although the collect for Easter Eve contains the traditional reference to “the glory of the Lord’s resurrection” on “this most holy night,” nothing else does. There was no Great Vigil among Lutherans in the early 20th century.
The recovery of this ancient and venerable tradition has been a key ingredient in the rediscovery of liturgical beauty and importance for Lutherans.
But still there is resistance, particularly among people who hadn’t grown up with the tradition, and for whom therefore it represented something new. Actually it’s something very old, which, like many venerable traditions, fell into disuse between the 17th and 19th centuries when Rationalism was on the rise. The recovery of Confessional Lutheranism has brought with it an awakening of liturgical piety, and a renewed appreciation for the Great Vigil.
The Vigil is a bit lengthier than a regular Sunday mass, but for those who are aware and appreciative of what’s going on, time does not seem to be a factor. It requires a little disciplining, a little training of the mind to grasp and appreciate the majesty of this holy night, but when that discipline is achieved, the Great Vigil begins to stand apart as an awe-inspiring ceremony, a high point of the year.
Holy Week and Easter Schedule April 4-13
Palm Sunday 9 am
(NO mass Saturday night, April 4!)
Holy Monday Mass 7 pm
Holy Tuesday Mass 7 pm
Holy Wednesday Mass 7 pm
Maundy Thursday Mass 7 pm
Good Friday Solemn Liturgy and Mass 7 pm
Holy Saturday , April 11
Great Vigil of Easter 7 pm
Easter Day, April 12:
Sunrise Mass 7 am
(Easter breakfast 8:30 am)
NO late Mass on Easter!
NEW: Easter Monday, April 13: Mass at 8:30 am
Easter change of schedule!
In case you haven’t yet heard,
There will be NO 10 a.m. mass on Easter Sunday this year. Please plan accordingly.
Sunrise mass is moved to 7 am, and will be followed by the Easter breakfast and a special Bible class.
In addition, as usual:
Mass every night Monday through Saturday during Holy Week, at 7 pm.
Holy Saturday Easter Vigil (7 pm, not 5:30)
(No morning masses during Holy Week.)
First Monday Vespers
In April this service moves to the second Monday, since Holy Monday is on the first Monday. Anyone may attend this service, which normally lasts about 20 minutes.
The schedule for April 13th:
6 pm Altar Guild meets in Conference Room
6:45 Vespers (open to all)
Following Vespers: Elders meet
4/1/1988 William and Beth Dolieslager
4/13/2002 Steve and Sheri Kraklow
4/29/1989 Scott and Jude Clapper
Sesquicentennial Project Underway
The sesquicentennial (150 years) anniversary of the founding of this parish is in 2012. Your Church Council has nominated Sue Murphy as the chairman in charge of plans for this event. But all members of the parish are encouraged to participate.
The first meeting for our sesquicentennial plans has been set for Sunday, April 19th, after our quarterly voters’ assembly. For this reason, we are rescheduling the time for voters to begin at 6 pm. We expect the voters’ meeting to be short, and with a short interlude for vespers, we could expect the sesquicentennial meeting to begin around 7:15. Everyone is invited to come and begin planning for what we hope will be an exciting 150th year, 2012.
Sue and Pastor had a first meeting to discuss some possible goals for that year. We came up with this very tentative list.
1. New church directory
2. Updated church history
3. New choir robes – sew our own?
4. New or repaired server/acolyte robes
5. Painting of the church (big expense)
6. New floor in cafeteria: perhaps with mosaic picture?
7. New altar wall (big expense)
April Voters and 150th
As indicated in the previous article, our schedule for Sunday, April 12th, is as follows:
6:00 p.m. Voters’ Assembly (note time)
After voters, a brief Vespers service
7:15 p.m. (time approximate) 150th anniversary meeting
April Ushers Steve Peart, Grant Andreson, Larry Campbell
4/3 Adam Shreck
4/7 Carole Sanders
4/12 Steven Grier
4/16 Andrew Eckardt
4/17 Jude Clapper
4/19 Luke Wells
4/22 Grant Andreson
Altar Guild notes from March 2, 2009
There are four months during the year which have five Sundays, so each of the four teams will take the fifth Sunday once in the year. March has five Sundays; team 1 (Chris and Bea) will take the fifth Sunday.
We need some volunteers on Sat 28th of March after morning mass to put up the Passiontide veils.
Holy week masses only in the evening, Monday through Saturday.
Always check pyx containing extra hosts before setting it out
Altar Guild for April changed to second Monday (13th) because of Holy Week.
Maundy Thursday evening white. Two ladies needed to help with the stripping of the altar at the close of the service.
Be sure to dry the sacrarium (the sink for sacred rinsing) after use.
Mass on Saturday evening, April 25: St. Mark, Evangelist. Color is RED. Change back to WHITE for Sunday the 26th.
New Members and Newly Confirmand
We rejoice over the exciting things planned for Holy Week this year.
On Maundy Thursday, we welcome by reaffirmation of faith
. . . and we welcome back her baptized children with her:
On Holy Saturday, at the Vigil of Easter, we also look forward to the confirmation of
Congratulations to all!
Saturday, April 4 starting 8 AM (break for church at 9 am). Clean up and repair. If you know of something that needs to be done and you would like to work at that project and would need some equipment or parts to fix the item let one of your trustee know and we will help you find what you need
Thanks for the help -Your Trustees
Mary Hamilton at home; Ruth Snider at home; Mark Baker at home, and Anna Baker at home. Jack Stewart at Kewanee Care; Mirilda Greiert at Courtyard Estates; Elva Garrison at Avon Nursing Home; Ruth Melchin at Hillcrest Home; Jane Melchin at Lutheran Home, Peoria. Lorraine Mohr is recovering from back surgery at home.
The Lighter Side
An oldie but goodie, always worth a reprint . . .
WE ARE PLEASED TO ANNOUNCE LUTHERAN AIRLINES IS NOW OPERATING IN MINNY SOTA! ALSO SERVING VISCONSIN, NORDERN MITCHIGEN , NORT & SOUT DAKOTA.
If you are travelin soon, consider Lutran Air, the no-frills airline. You're all in da same boat on Lutran Air, here flyin is a upliftin experience. Dair is no first class on any Lutran Air flight.
Meals are potluck. Rows 1 tru 6, bring rolls; 7 tru 15, bring a salad; 16 tru 21, a hot dish, and 22-30, a dessert.
Basses and tenors please sit in da rear of da aircraft.
Everyone is responsible for his or her own baggage.
All fares are by free will offering, and da plane will not land til da budget is met.
Pay attention to your flight attendant, who vill acquaint you wit da safety system aboard dis Lutran Air. Okay den, listen up; I'm only gonna say dis vonce:
In da event of a sudden loss of cabin pressure, I am frankly gonna be real surprised and so vill Captain Olson, because ve fly right around two tousand feet, so loss of cabin pressure would probably mean da Second Coming or someting of dat nature, and I wouldn't bodder with doze liddle masks on da rubber tubes--you're gonna have bigger tings to worry about den dat.. Just stuff doze back up in dair liddle holes.
Probably da masks fell out because of turbulence which, to be honest wit you, we're gonna have quite a bit of at two tousand feet, sorta like driving across a plowed field, but after a while you get used to it.
In da event of a water landing, I'd say forget it. Start saying da Lord's Prayer and just hope you get to da part about forgive us our sins as we forgive dose who sin against us, which some people say 'trespass against us,' but what can you do?
Da use of cell phones on da plane is strictly forbidden, not because day may confuse da plane's navigation system, which is by da pants all da way. No, it's because cell phones are a pain in da wazoo, and if God had meant you to use a cell phone, He wudda put your mout on da side of your head.
We start lunch right about noon and it's buffet style wit da coffeepot up front.
Den we'll have da hymn sing; hymnals are in da seat pockets in front of you. Don't take yours wit you when you go or I am gonna be real upset and I am not kiddin!
Right now I'll say Grace :
Come, Lord Jesus , be our guest
and let deze gifts to us be blessed.
Fader, Son, and Holy Ghost,
May we land in Dulut or pretty close.
New to the worship schedule: Tuesday mornings
After Lent, in which there is daily mass, a change in the schedule will become noticeable. Since we are no longer having communion at the nursing home at the regular Tuesday morning time (shut-ins are being seen individually), a regular Tuesday morning mass has been added to the schedule. Every Tuesday at 8:30, we will have Low Mass (spoken).
The one exception is Easter week. Pastor will be out of town from Monday afternoon until Thursday. Therefore there will be a Monday morning mass on April 13th (with propers for Easter Monday), but no mass on Tuesday. Also, there will be no midweek mass that week.
No Saturday evening Mass April 4th
No Late Mass Easter Morning, April 12th (Sunrise only, at 7 am)
Easter Monday, May 13th: Mass at 8:30 am
No Mass Easter Tuesday, May 14th
No Midweek Mass Easter Wednesday, May 15th
Keeping the Feast: A Study of the Holy Liturgy (continued)
Agnus Dei and Secrets
As soon as the elements have been consecrated and adored, the congregation breaks into singing the Agnus Dei: O Christ Thou Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world, have mercy upon us . . . These words are an echo of the words of John the Baptist who pointed Christ out to his disciples, saying, “Behold the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world” (St. John 1:19) Thus the assembled Church also, who likewise have just been shown Christ the Lamb in the consecrated Elements, now confess that He is truly there. Thus it is toward the Sacrament that these words are sung, a subtle but profound movement of heart and mind during this singing. That is, we do not here merely pray to Christ in the same way as we do at other times. The Agnus Dei (which is Latin for “Lamb of God”) is directed specifically toward Christ on the altar.
In this way we make another subtle confession against receptionism. Receptionism is an error by which some hold that the Body and Blood of Christ are not actually present until or unless they are received. The receptionist error seeks to slice and divide which of the consecrated elements are Jesus’ Body and Blood and which are not, or worse, to put off the moment of the change until the bread is received. It amounts to a new reading of Christ=s words, as if He had said, This will become my Body when you eat it, but is not yet at this moment of consecration my body. But Christ said is, and He cannot lie. The Zwinglians of Luther’s day denied altogether that the Sacrament is truly Christ’s Body and Blood, but that is only a difference in degree: the receptionists put off the effect of is until later, whereas the Zwinglians put it off until never.
The sophistry of receptionism is far worse than transubstantiation, which is merely a philosophical construct by which it is held that the essence or substance of the elements changes while the attributes or accidents of them stay the same, with the result that bread and wine are no longer essentially present at all. Though we reject also transubstantiation as a philosophical attempt to unravel the mystery, we find receptionism to be much more offensive, since a wholesale rejection of Christ=s is is worse than the impropriety of its philosophical analysis. As Luther once put it, "I would rather eat only the Body of Christ with the Pope than to eat only bread with the Zwinglians."
Hence we are given a most fitting opportunity to confess especially against the receptionists at the Agnus Dei: we are kneeling, adoring, and praying to Christ whom we believe to be truly present in the Sacrament as it sits on the altar, His true Body and Blood.
A helpful rubric during the singing of this canticle is to strike the breast with closed fist each time the word “sin” is said, an acknowledgement by the one singing: the sin of the world is also my sin.
Meanwhile the celebrant is praying the Secrets, which are different but similar prayers. He is also kneeling and privately praying, “. . . Lord, I am not worthy that Thou shouldest come under my roof; only say the word and my soul shall be healed . . .”
In this way the Church is reenacting the events of Gethsemane, wherein Jesus instructed His disciples to watch and pray as he went a stone’s throw from them and prayed privately. The Celebrant, who represents Jesus here, does in essence the same thing.
St. Paul’s Ev. Lutheran Church
109 S. Elm Street
Kewanee, IL 61443