SCRANTON – The Most Reverend Joseph C. Bambera, Bishop of Scranton, will offer Holy Week liturgies at the Cathedral of Saint Peter in Scranton beginning with Palm Sunday on April 10, and culminating with the celebration of Easter on April 17.
The faithful of the Diocese of Scranton are welcome to attend all of the Masses and services of Holy Week and the Paschal Triduum in person. All of the Masses will also be broadcast by CTV: Catholic Television of the Diocese of Scranton and livestream on the Diocese of Scranton website, YouTube channel and social media platforms.
“During this Holy Week, I pray that we will all come to appreciate more deeply than ever the fact that we are indeed blessed in more ways than we might believe or imagine. May we trust in God’s promise to sustain us and dispel our deepest fears,” Bishop Bambera said. “May we open our hearts to the risen Jesus and allow him to fill them with his love and peace.”
Palm Sunday through Easter is the holiest week of the Catholic calendar. Holy Thursday through Easter Sunday (known as the Paschal Triduum) commemorate Jesus’ sacrificial suffering, death and Resurrection. Christians believe that Jesus died in their place to atone for their sins, rose from death to show He had broken death’s power, and called His followers to share His love with others.
On this day, the Church remembers Christ’s entrance into Jerusalem. This commemoration, with the blessing of palms, is not a historical re-enactment; rather it is a ritual action that marks our own entry into Holy Week.
Bishop Bambera will celebrate a Pontifical Mass for Palm Sunday of the Lord’s Passion on Sunday, April 10, at 12:15 p.m. at the Cathedral of Saint Peter in Scranton.
The Chrism Mass will be celebrated at the Cathedral of Saint Peter at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, April 12. Bishop Bambera cordially invites the presbyterate, permanent deacons, and lay faithful to participate in this joyous celebration.
During the Chrism Mass, the bishop will bless three oils – the oil of catechumens, the oil of the infirm, and holy chrism – which will be used in the administration of the sacraments throughout the Diocese for the year.
Every parish in the Diocese has been invited to send representatives to the Cathedral to attend the Chrism Mass.
The Chrism Mass is typically the largest gathering of clergy in any diocese throughout the year.
Lent ends with the evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper, the principal liturgy of this day. In the Sacred Triduum, the Church celebrates the greatest mysteries of our redemption, keeping by means of special celebrations the memorial of her Lord, crucified, buried and risen.
The washing of the feet (“mandatum”) is an act of humility and service, which inspires the community to do the same.
Bishop Bambera will celebrate a Pontifical Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday, April 14, at 5:30 p.m. at the Cathedral of Saint Peter in Scranton.
On this day, the Church does not celebrate the Sacraments at all, except for Penance and the Anointing of the Sick.
During the Commemoration of Good Friday, the faithful are encouraged to venerate the Cross, which can be done this year with a bow or a genuflection.
Bishop Bambera will commemorate Good Friday of the Lord’s Passion on Friday, April 15, at 12:10 p.m. at the Cathedral of Saint Peter in Scranton.
By most ancient tradition, this is the night of keeping vigil for the Lord in which, following the Gospel admonition, the faithful, carrying lighted lamps, should be looking for the Lord when he returns, so that at his coming he may find them awake and have them sit at his table.
The Easter Vigil begins at a time that allows the new fire to break the darkness of night. Holy Saturday includes the Blessing of the Fire and Preparation of the Paschal Candle.
Bishop Bambera will celebrate the Vigil Mass of Easter on Saturday, April 16, at 8:00 p.m. at the Cathedral of Saint Peter in Scranton.
Easter is the celebration of Christ’s Resurrection from the dead. It marks the end of Holy Week, the last day of the Easter Triduum and is the beginning of the Easter season of the liturgical year.
Jesus’ Resurrection marks the triumph of good over evil, sin and death. It is the singular event which proves that those who trust in God and accept Christ will be raised from the dead. Since Easter represents the fulfillment of God’s promises to mankind, it is the most important day on the Christian calendar.
Bishop Bambera will celebrate a Pontifical Mass of Easter on Sunday, April 17, at 10 a.m. at the Cathedral of Saint Peter in Scranton.