This weekend marks the pinnacle of the Christian Year. Since Apostolic times Christians have given special emphasis to commemorating the death and resurrection of Jesus as the heart of God’s plan of Salvation for humanity.
And by the second century, historical records show churches celebrating the Great Easter Vigil – a mega-worship event that began on Saturday evening and continued until Easter dawn. Through this service believers would read Bible passages that trace the whole account of Salvation history from Eden through the promise of Jesus’ return. Often new converts were baptized during this service, and then welcomed into the Family of Believers and the celebration of their first communion.
In time the Triduum developed. The word means “three days” – and marks the three day period from Thursday evening when Jesus and his disciples celebrated the Last Supper through Easter Sunday evening when the Risen Lord appeared to his disciples in the Upper Room.
At KCRC we don’t hold services on Holy Thursday evening. Instead, we commemorated the institution of the Lord’s Supper through our Seder service last Sunday morning. We WILL however, worship together on Good Friday and on Easter (see details elsewhere in PKN).
I encourage you to observe your own form of a Triduum in some way that is meaningful to you.
Celebrate it – carefully, intentionally, and without rushing.
Perhaps in your evening or dinner devotions today consider reading the account of the Last Supper, as recorded in Matthew 26:17-35. And so launch your three-day period of remembering.
Then take time to worship tomorrow. Honour it as a holy day – not just a stat holiday for getting stuff done around the house. Focus in your personal & family Bible readings on the account of Jesus suffering & death. Find some way to remind yourself of it throughout the course of the day.
And then comes Saturday. This is the day that most of us miss. We forget about what happened on Saturday. Think about it – if you were one of the first disciples, what would YOU have been doing that Saturday? It was an anxious, dark, LOOOOONNNNNNGGGGG day for them – hiding behind locked doors, trying to come to terms with their shock & grief, certain that everything they had hoped for was now gone. Angry at God, perhaps. After all, HOW could He, if Sovereign, allow this to happen?
Can you take a few minutes on Saturday to quietly reflect and wonder?
And – here’s a good day to pray for those you know whose lives are constantly lived in Saturday-mode…… because of relentless suffering, or shattered dreams, or broken pieces of their lives that don’t seem to find any healing; pray for those who are, perhaps, angry at God. Or wondering where he is. Or why this & that was allowed to happen.
Don’t rush through Saturday.
Give it some holy space.
Finally, there’s Sunday.
Ah, Easter Sunday! Day of GREAT celebration!!
This is THE moment when everything changed.
Please consider reading 1 Corinthians 15…. yes, the whole chapter. Especially the last verse.
And be sure – do WHATEVER you have to do to get to worship. Either here at KCRC, or with another community that honors Jesus. This is bigger than Christmas, friends – WAY bigger. Don’t miss it because of some brunch appointment. Oh, yes, and keep praying for the Lord to grant you an opportunity to invite someone along to worship with you.
So…. there it is:
The Great Triduum – the three holiest days for all friends & followers of Jesus.
Please, friends –
Don’t blow past ’em.
Don’t rush through them.
Take your time.
And believe with all your heart that….
Christ has died!
Christ is risen!
Christ will come again!