A different way to experience Holy Week 

My daughter, Ivy, is only one, but she loves books. My husband and I read with her regularly and enjoy watching as she turns the pages, points, and speaks in a language only she can understand to indicate what she sees. Before she was born we were given lots of books. As the daughter of two ministers I am sure you can imagine how many of those books were about faith, Jesus, and the Bible!

One book that I bought before she was born was a cardboard book about Holy Week. It is a book that uses Holy Week to teach young children about emotions. Each page has a different emotion and scripture passage along with a colorful drawing to describe an event from scripture attributed to Jesus’ final days on earth. Even though she isn’t old enough to understand the concept of emotion, we read it yesterday anyway. Or at least, we took a good, long look at the pictures as we sat outside on our porch to celebrate Palm Sunday.

Holy Week begins with Palm Sunday, a day that Christians celebrate Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem. Holy Week begins with a celebration that affirms Jesus’ kingship on Palm Sunday and ends with Easter, celebrating Jesus’ resurrection from the dead, but in between there are a myriad of unexpected actions, distressing emotions, and words filled with the tension of life and death.

Explore a brief devotional guide for each day of Holy Week. Much like Ivy’s book about Holy Week, there is a word for each day with a corresponding scripture, devotional thought, and prayer. We plan to post these devotions on social media for our community every day at noon on Facebook and Instagram, but we want you to have a copy to use for your own time of reflection and prayer this week.

Holy Week is a week that we experience together as a community. Stations of the Cross are placed in Butler Chapel for students, faculty and staff to experience all week. The Fine Arts Department regularly offers a concert on Palm Sunday. Holy Week sermons are delivered in Connections. The Divinity School holds a Maundy Thursday service, and on the Monday we return from Easter break, Spiritual Life holds an Easter service in place of the usual monthly Campus Worship.

Even though Holy Week looks different this year we can still experience it together.

Here is what is being offered on social media for Holy Week from the Office of Spiritual Life and the Divinity School in addition to the daily words and devotions:

When What Where to watch
Tuesday, April 7 Sermon, Dr. Barry Jones, Divinity School Divinity School Facebook
2 p.m. Wednesday, April 8 Student prayer WebEx

Meeting ID: 611 784 588
Password: Camels

Thursday, April 8 Maundy Thursday sermon, Dr. Cameron Jorgenson, Divinity School Divinity School Facebook
Friday, April 9 Good Friday sermon, Rev. Louisa Ward, Spiritual Life Spiritual Life Facebook
Monday, April 13 Easter sermon, Rev. Faithe Beam, Spiritual Life Spiritual Life Facebook
Download the Devotional Guide