Matt Hadro, Senior DC Correspondent
The biggest thing during our quasi-quarantine has been structuring our day, and for me, praying the Liturgy of the Hours has been a natural and quite helpful practice to center the day around God and pray with the rest of the church. I'll definitely continue this through the Triduum and beyond.
For the Triduum, this is what we have planned:
Livestream Mass of Our Lord's Supper
Afterwards make a holy hour at home.
Livestream the Good Friday liturgy from our local parish or diocesan cathedral
Pray the Stations of the Cross at home
Try to duck into an empty church that's still open
Limit screen time to watching liturgies or a movie like “The Passion.”
Cook and clean to prepare our home for Easter
Live stream the Easter Vigil from our parish or diocesan cathedral, and then break the fast like champs.
Christine Rousselle, DC Correspondent
I live 538 miles away from my nearest Catholic relative, so I typically do not go home for Easter even during non-pandemic years.
Here in Virginia, where I live, I had developed a routine over the past few years: Holy Thursday liturgy and seven-church pilgrimage with the Dominican House of Studies in DC, Good Friday at my parish in Arlington followed by a fish sandwich from Popeyes, Easter Vigil somewhere in the greater DC area, and then Mass on Easter Sunday at my parish in Arlington--followed by brunch with my friends who don’t celebrate Easter as they’re usually the only ones still in town.
This year, I’ll be doing things a bit differently. On Thursday, instead of being with the Dominican friars, I’ll be on a virtual pilgrimage with the Diocese of Arlington. Friday, I plan on watching the pre-recorded Stations of the Cross that my parish released on YouTube--and maybe getting more Popeyes' fish delivered.
I’m not yet sure what the plan is for Saturday and Sunday. I have acquired Easter best-type outfits through my Rent the Runway subscription, so I plan on still dressing up, in order to maintain some sense of normalcy.
I find it hard to pay attention to streamed Masses, so I’m probably not going to stream the Easter Vigil--but I will likely tune in to Mass on Sunday morning. Afterwards, my roommates and I are planning on making pancakes and drinking mimosas. I’ve purchased some Easter candy and basket stuffers to surprise them (shh!), and I’m crocheting bunnies as part of my quaren-crafting.
This will be an Easter unlike any other, but that does not mean that the festivities have to have a cloud over them. Christ still defeated death and rose from the dead, so for that, I am grateful.
JD Flynn, Editor-in-chief
We're looking forward to a quiet Triduum.
In my own prayer, I'll read the Passion narrative of John's Gospel, and probably read Genesis 22 and the book of Jonah.
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We tell our kids a little bit about Christ's passion each night. Christmas, I've realized, is so much easier catechetically, because everyone understands birthdays.
But we've been talking about how Jesus was on the cross so that we wouldn't have to be, and how because of that, and because Jesus came off the cross, we can go to Jesus' house forever someday, and it will be great. We're not master catechists, but with three little kids who have no concept of death, let alone resurrection, we're doing our best!
I've realized through all of this that during Holy Week, the liturgies of the Church catechize well before we have an intellectual grasp of what's going on -- and more than intellectual catechesis, they imprint experiences on us. So our goal, more than anything, is to imprint formational experiences on our kids. On Holy Thursday we'll sing the Pange Lingua, which my kids love, and I'll wash everyone's feet. On Good Friday we'll make some stations of the cross, and find some ways of making the day more muted, and on the evening of Holy Saturday we'll have a bonfire in the backyard and talk about "waiting for Jesus."
And we'll listen to the Exsultet, the Easter proclamation, because it's my favorite liturgical moment in the Church's life.
Then on Sunday, we'll eat a lot.
I don't know what my kids will remember, but it's worth a shot!