Category Archives: Lent

Holy Week and Easter at St Mary’s

The services of Holy Week and Easter are, without question, the most important of the year as we enter ‘real time’ and immerse ourselves in the events of the last days of Jesus’s life in Jerusalem; events that take us from the upper room with his friends to his betrayal in Gethsemane, from his trial and crucifixion to his glorious and triumphant rising to new life on that first Easter morning.

We invite you to join us as we make this journey together, and all are welcome at any of our services:

Palm Sunday – 10th April

We meet at the Cricket Pavilion car park at 9.15am and then process to St Mary’s singing and waving our palms, as we remember Jesus entering Jerusalem and being greeted by the crowds.

When we arrive at St Mary’s, the service includes a dramatised reading of the Passion account with members of the congregation taking the parts of the various characters in the Biblical story.

At 6.30 pm we offer The Way of The Cross – a service with choir anthems and congregational hymns interspersed with prayers, scripture and poetry as we mark the start of Holy Week.

Holy Week  

Monday 11th, Tuesday 12th and Wednesday 13th April

8.00 pm           Holy Eucharist with Devotional Address

Preacher: The Venerable Jonathan Smith

On the first three evenings of Holy Week, we gather for a communion service and our guest preacher for these there evenings is The Venerable Jonathan Smith, former Archdeacon of St Albans who will be exploring the theme of ‘Restoration’

Maundy Thursday – 14th April

8.00 pm           The Liturgy of the Lord’s Supper with foot washing

9.00 pm           The Vigil of Gethsemane until midnight, concluding with

11.50 pm         Compline

A service that portrays Jesus gathering with his disciples in the Upper Room. During the Last Supper Jesus kneels and washes their feet as an example to them of humble, loving service. He also inaugurates the Eucharist by taking the bread and wine of the meal they were sharing and commands them to continue to take bread and wine and share them as a special way of remembering him.

At the end of the service, we process to a side-chapel decorated in greenery to represent the Garden of Gethsemane and there we sit, and pray and watch as we remember Jesus praying in the garden and then recall his betrayal by Judas and arrest. We offer the short service of Compline at 11.50 pm to end the Vigil at midnight.

GOOD FRIDAY – 15th April

10.00 am         All Age Service

11.30 am         Ecumenical Walk of Witness from St John Fisher RC Church to the Common

1.30 pm           Good Friday Liturgy with Communion

Our service at 10.00 am is for all ages and remembers the last events of Jesus’s life as he his arrested, and put on trial and led out to die on a cross for us.  We sing and pray and share in activities that help us understand more deeply into this amazing sacrificial love that Jesus shows on the cross.

At 11.30 am we gather at the Catholic Church in Peppard Close, with Christians from St John Fisher, Redbourn Methodist Church and St Mary’s to share in this shared act of witness to our common faith as we walk, following a large wooden cross, through the village offering hymns prayers and Bible readings and we finish with hot cross buns and refreshments at the Methodist Church on North Common.

At 1.30 pm we gather for this stark and solemn act of worship at the very time that Jesus was on the Cross. In the service we hear the story of his crucifixion, we offer our prayers and share in communion together, finishing at 3 pm – at the very time that Jesus breathed his last.

EASTER DAY – 17th April

6.00 am           Dawn Vigil with Easter Ceremonies including Parish Breakfast, leading into

8.00 am           The First Communion of Easter (Book of Common Prayer)

9.30 am           Online Easter Broadcast via www.stmasrysredbourn.org

10.00 am        All Age Easter Eucharist followed by Refreshments and Easter Egg Hunt

11.30 am         Morning Praise with Holy Baptism

Our dawn vigil starts in the early light and in a sequence of readings we recall the story of our salvation history. We bless and light our Easter candle and then carry it into the church as the first light of Easter, representing the rising of Christ. We conclude this dawn service by affirming our baptismal promises and then share breakfast together.

Our 8am Easter Day service will be led by Bishop Robin and will include a couple of rousing Easter hymns as well as sharing in communion together.

Our 10 am Easter service will be outside on the church lawn if the weather is dry, or in church if wet. A joyful celebration of Easter with hymns, prayers and an All-Age talk. The service will be followed by refreshments and an Easter Egg hunt in the churchyard.

As well as our morning services in person, we offer a special Easter broadcast online via our St Mary’s website and YouTube that recalls the story of Easter in a series of powerful flashbacks.  It will be well worth a look, whether you are able to come to some of the other services in person or not.

EASTER MONDAY – 18th April

10.30 am         Meet at St Mary’s for the Pilgrimage to St Albans – All welcome

 Picnic Lunch on the Abbey Orchard followed by service at 3.00 pm

The Easter Monday Pilgrimage has been a tradition for over 50 years and we invite you to join us. All are welcome. We will gather for breakfast baps at 10.30 am and then set off at around 11.15 am for the gentle 6 mile walk, following the River Ver, through the Gorhambury Estate and Verulamium to the Abbey for a picnic lunch outside and an Easter celebration service with the Bishops in the Cathedral at 3 pm. We can arrange some lifts back for those who only want to walk there and not back again afterwards!

Lent 2022 at St Mary’s

As we start the season of Lent, we recall Jesus going into the wilderness for forty days to pray and to prepare for the ministry that lay ahead of him. 

In similar fashion, Christians over the centuries have sought to use the forty days of this holy season as a time to draw near to God through prayer, reflection and study, as we prepare for Holy Week and our annual remembering of the Suffering, Crucifixion and Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Below you will see the opportunities we have on Tuesday evenings and the devotional addresses at the Wednesday Eucharist. In addition to these, we also have a couple of elements with the additional value and richness of being shared with members of the other churches in Redbourn.  There is an ecumenical series exploring some parables hosted at St Mary’s on Thursday evenings, and Friday lunches in the Garden Room at the Methodist Church.

There are some suggestions below to help you make the most of the coming six weeks.  But they are only suggestions and you will know your own commitments and spiritual needs.  With different times and days on offer, I hope that you will be able to come along to something.


WHAT HE TAUGHT

Tuesdays at 9.00 pm: Devotional Address and Compline

A fifteen minute reflection each week exploring five distinctive pictures by Dinah Roe Kendall depicting the teaching of Jesus about the Kingdom of God to be found in Matthew’s Gospel, followed by the quiet, reflective service of plainsong Compline.

8th March  –  Faithful: The Wheat and the Weeds    Mt 13. 24-30, 36-43  

15th March  – Precious: The Pearl    Mt 13. 45-46  

22nd March – Good: The Net  Mt 13. 47-50  

29th March – Forgiving: The Unmerciful Servant Mt 18. 21-35   

5th April  –  Attentive: The Wise and Foolish Virgins  Mt 25. 1-13           


WHO HE IS

Wednesdays at 7.30 pm: Holy Eucharist with Address

Our regular Wednesday Eucharist is enhanced by a short address on the first five I AM sayings found in St John’s Gospel.

9th March –  I am…The Bread of Life John 6. 35-40

16th March  – I am…The Light of the World John 8. 12-20

23rd March – I am…The Door John 10. 1-10

30th March – I am…The Good Shepherd John 10. 11-18              

6th April –  I am…The Resurrection and the Life John 11. 17-27 


LIVING THE PARABLES

Thursdays at 8.00pm: Churches Together in Redbourn

On Thursday evenings we will explore together – in an engaging and interactive way – some of Jesus’ parables. We’ll use our senses and a variety of approaches to search for the parables’ message and meaning.

Each Thursday evening session will be complete in itself, but you are encouraged to attend all of the five explorations.

10th March – The Parable of the Talents Mt 25: 14-30 also Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians Chapter 12

17 March – The Parable of the Labourers in the Vineyard Mt 20: 1-16

24 March – The Parable of the Sower Mt 13: 1-23

31 March – The Parable of the Shrewd Steward Luke 16: 1-13

7 April – The Parable of the Great Dinner Luke 14: 15-24


LENT CHARITY LUNCHES at Redbourn Methodist Church

Fridays at 12.30pm

Redbourn Churches will take it in turn to provide a simple lunch at the Methodist Church as we share together and socialise. Donations equivalent to the cost of your lunch are invited and these will be given to our Lent charities.

Lent Charity Lunches are on the 11, 18 and 25 March and 1 & 8 April at Redbourn Methodist Church.


DAILY THOUGHTS FOR THE DAY

Alongside the things here in Redbourn, the Church of England is offering #LiveLent 2022 church resource: Embracing Justice. This Lent we are called to reflect on the injustices of the world and ask what God is calling us to do about them.

Over forty days, we step into God’s work in the here and now – and in doing so we move from brokenness towards wholeness, remembering the cry of the Prophet Isaiah: ‘Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of injustice?’

You can receive this electronically on your phone, computer or tablet by subscribing at: www.churchofengland.org/resources/livelent-2022-church-resources-embracing-justice

This journey through Lent is one in which we seek inner transformation in order to be people of a new world, people who reflect God’s vision that all are created equal and to see afresh the vision of God and join in making his promise of a world transformed become a reality.