Category Archives: Liturgy Letter Year C

Liturgy Letter Newsletter – Holy Week 2019 (Thursday, Friday, Saturday)

Paschal Triduum

The most striking worship celebrations of the Christian church happen every year at the end of the Lenten season. There is no greater contrast between darkness and light than the eclipse and glory that were experienced by Jesus’ disciples between the Last Supper and Easter morning. For centuries, Christians have marked the progression of these events through worship. They reenact these bedrock events to honor Christ, celebrate salvation, and grow in the way of Jesus through imitation and reflection. This period of time in the Church’s calendar has traditionally been referred to as the Paschal Triduum or “The Three Days.”

“The events framed by Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem and his resurrection are some of the most dramatic and theologically important of the entire scriptural narrative. These days feature not only the drama of the triumphal entry, trial, last supper, and crucifixion but also Jesus’ poignant prayers and prophetic teachings. John’s gospel devotes eight of its twenty-one chapters to this week alone—reminding us of a common observation that the gospels are “passion narratives with long introductions.” The week begins with Passion/Palm Sunday and ends with the “three days” (also called the Triduum, from sunset on Thursday to sunset on Easter Day), the period during which we mark Jesus’ trial, death, and resurrection.”
-from The Worship Sourcebook, 2nd Edition.

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Liturgy Letter Newsletter – Holy Week 2019 (Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday)

Holy Week

Lent began over five weeks ago on Ash Wednesday. Over the course of this week, Christians around the world will re-enact and remember the days leading up to Christ’s death and resurrection. This journey towards the cross began on Palm Sunday with a commemoration of Jesus entry into Jerusalem on a donkey. The people who confessed and praised him as the Savior King later cry out, “…crucify him, crucify him!”

On Monday and Tuesday, Jesus returned to Jerusalem from Bethany and purified the Temple, fulfilling prophecies from the Old Testament (ex. Malachi 3:1-5). In Jerusalem, tensions continued to run high between Jesus and the religious rulers. Wednesday of Holy week is traditionally called “Spy Wednesday” because the enemies of Jesus were watching him closely and looking for an opportunity to capture him. On this day, the anointing of Jesus by Mary of Bethany is juxtaposed with the tragic betrayal of Judas.  

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Liturgy Letter Newsletter – Sixth Sunday in Lent 2019 (Year C)

Hosanna to the One Who Suffered and Died

“The Lord gives us a teachable heart so that we might encourage others (Isaiah 50:4-9a). When we are grieved and discouraged, we turn to God in trust for help (Psalm 31:9-16) knowing that he gave his only son Jesus, who came to earth (Luke 19:28-40) to die for us on the cross (Philippians 2:5-11).”
-Thomas Oden, Ancient Christian Devotional

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Liturgy Letter Newsletter – Fifth Sunday in Lent 2019 (Year C)

Confidence in Christ

God continually promises to deliver his people and provide for them for his names’ sake (Isaiah 43:16-21). God’s past deliverance provides hope for those who are weeping in the present (Psalm 126). Our confidence is in Christ, and not in our selves, as we continue to press on in faith, participating in Christ’s suffering, death and resurrection (Philippians 3:4-14). In humility, we follow Mary’s example by laying all that we have at Jesus’ feet (John 12:1-8). 

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Liturgy Letter Newsletter – Fourth Sunday of Lent 2019 (Year C)

God Cares for the Lost

“God cares for his people (Joshua 5:9-12) and forgives our sins. We can trust him and his steadfast love – he is our refuge in times of distress (Psalm 32). Through Christ, we become a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:16-21) and are heirs to the kingdom of God (Luke 15:1-3, 11-32).” -Thomas Oden, Ancient Christian Devotional

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Liturgy Letter Newsletter – Third Sunday in Lent 2019 (Year C)

Thirsting for God in the Wilderness

God provides refreshment for the thirsty (Isaiah 55:1-9). Humbly seek God’s presence, remember his blessings and praise his name (Psalm 63:1-8). We learn from those who have gone through the wilderness before us and ask God to help us endure our own times of temptation (1 Corinthians 10:1-13). God is gracious, but the consequences of refusing to repent stand as a warning for all (Luke 13:1-9).

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Liturgy Letter Newsletter – Second Sunday in Lent 2019 (Year C)

Toward God’s Promises

The Lord is our light, inspiring boldness in the midst of fear and darkness (Psalm 27). The promises he has made are sealed in blood and continue for untold generations (Genesis 15:1-12, 17-18). Like Jesus, we press on toward the cross because our citizenship in heaven is guaranteed (Philippians 3:17-41). In spite of adversity, Jesus stayed faithful until his mission was accomplished (Luke 4:1-13).

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Liturgy Letter Newsletter – First Sunday in Lent 2019 (Year C)

Trust in the Lord and Confess Jesus as Savior

Trust in the Lord and make him your dwelling place (Psalm 99:1-2, 9-16). God provides deliverance and salvation to his people. Therefore, we should offer God the first fruits of our labor to celebrate his provision. (Deuteronomy 26:1-11) All those who confess Jesus as Lord, and call on his name are counted among God’s beloved children and will be saved (Romans 10:8b-13). Jesus has done what we could not. He has fully rejected the temptations of the evil one in order to glorify God and secure our salvation (Luke 4:1-13).

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Liturgy Letter Newsletter – Transfiguration Sunday 2019 (Year C)

Glimpses of Glory and Revelations of Grace

God has provided glimpses of his glory and holiness (Exodus 34:29-35). These revelations inspire awe and worship (Psalm 99). Our hope rests in God’s revelation to us through Jesus Christ. Thanks be to God! He is transforming us through his Spirit and calling us into the light of his glory (2 Corinthians 3:12-4:2). At times, we may be terrified, but we are called to trust God and listen to his Chosen Son as we worship and wait for his healing (Luke 9:28-43a).

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Liturgy Letter Newsletter – Seventh Sunday after the Epiphany 2019 (Year C)

Wait for God’s Salvation / Extend Forgiveness and Mercy

Forgiveness and mercy accompany God’s plan to prosper and protect his people (Genesis 45:3-11,15). We are called to trust in God and wait for his salvation in the midst of those who reject God and his ways (Psalm 37:1-11,39-40). We must go the extra mile to love our enemies and extend mercy (Luke 6:27-38). For we know that we will one day inherit imperishable bodies and that our suffering will come to an end (1 Cor. 15:35-38,42-50). 

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