Dear St. Hilda's & St. Hugh's families,
Even with the tremendous changes in our lives, we are aware of the upcoming observance of Holy Week, the last week of Lent. That is, Palm Sunday March 28th, through to Easter, April 4th. During this week the church commemorates the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The central story of Christianity lies in Holy Week, and you're invited to enter into it. This is a week for you to worship, to walk with Jesus into and out of his passion, and ponder this story of God, the brokenness in our world, and what the cross means anew.
On Palm Sunday, March 28th, you'll hear the passion story, which begins with Jesus exhorting his disciples to hold true during the trials to come, which of course they don’t really understand. Judas his disciple will undertake his plan to betray Jesus to the corrupt authorities.
On Maundy Thursday, April 1, in the garden, Jesus will reach out to God for a different course, then finally accept the path before him, just before being arrested. Even Jesus' lead disciple, Peter, will fail Jesus. The authorities will convict Jesus. You will consider how a man who has done no wrong can be so treated.
On Good Friday, April 2, Jesus must walk ahead of the crowds to Golgotha, where he empties himself, on a cross. The earth quakes. The Sun fails. When Jesus is buried, it feels as if God has abandoned his people.
At the Saturday night Vigil, April 3 the church waits and recalls the promises of God, and then gasps with Mary on Easter Sunday morning, April 4th, when she hears her name spoken and recognizes his voice. A new journey will begin for them. We “step into” something greater than ourselves, a new life.
Your family is invited to attend Holy Week live streamed services at St. Michael's Church. The Rev. Katharine Flexer, P ’21, '24, is the rector. Links will be available on saintmichaelschurch.org. Additionally, in-person services are available at St Luke's Church in Hell's Kitchen, where I serve. Information will be available on stlukesnyc.org
Blessings to your family,
Rev Arden C. Strasser, Chaplain
The Rev. Dr. Arden Strasser has been Chaplain at St. Hilda's & St. Hugh's since 2017. He is also Pastor at Saint Luke's Lutheran Church in Times Square.
Pastor Strasser earned degrees from the University of Rochester, the University of Colorado, and the University of Natal, South Africa. He earned his Doctor of Ministry degree from Drew University. Pastor Strasser has also served on the boards of the Volunteer Missionary Movement and the American International School of Lusaka.