Holy Week 2022 – Saturday

We continue to turn the tables of our understanding


Luke 23 50-51 There was a man named Joseph, who was from Arimathea in Judea. Joseph was a good and honest man, and he was eager for God’s kingdom to come. He was also a member of the council, but he did not agree with what they had decided.

52 Joseph went to Pilate and asked for Jesus’ body. 53 He took the body down from the cross and wrapped it in fine cloth. Then he put it in a tomb that had been cut out of solid rock and had never been used. 54 It was Friday, and the Sabbath was about to begin.

55 The women who had come with Jesus from Galilee followed Joseph and watched how Jesus’ body was placed in the tomb. 56  Then they went to prepare some sweet-smelling spices for his burial. But on the Sabbath they rested, as the Law of Moses commands.





from a book of jewish women’s prayers (1995)

Because we give charity on your behalf, dear souls, strengthen us to achieve the right way and not drown in the lusts of this world. Let us not be led astray by the Evil Inclination. By the merit of our forefathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and the merit of all righteous men and women, may we be found worthy of beholding the reconstruction of the Holy Temple and the resurrection of the dead, speedily and in our time. Amen.


Egeria in the Holy land, c. 380 CE

Egeria was a nun from France who was touring the Holy Land in the late 4th century. She was in Jerusalem during Holy Week and provides the only eye witness account of how the early church celebrated.

On the following day, which is Saturday, there is as usual a service at the third hour and again at the sixth hour. There is no service, however, at the ninth hour on the Saturday, for preparations is being made for the Easter vigil in the major church, the Martyrium. The Easter vigil is observed here exactly as we observe it at home. Only one thing is done more elaborately here. After the neophytes have been baptized and dressed as soon as they came forth from the baptismal font, they are led first of all to the Anastasis with the bishop. The bishop goes within the railings of the Anastasis, a hymn is sung, and he prays for them. Then he returns with them to the major church, where all the people are hoildng the vigil as is customary. Everything is done which is customarily done at home with us, and after the sacrifice (Communion/Eucharist) has been offered, the dismissal is given. After the vigil service has been celebrated in the major church, everyone comes to the Anastasis singing hymns. There, once again, the text of the Gospel of the Resurrection is read, a prayer is said, and once again the bishop offers the sacrifice.

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