In Holy Week, the Catholic Church invites us to experience the most critical moments in history. In the business of daily life, the repetitive nature of the liturgical calendar, and the extended season of Lent, it’s easy to miss the power of these days. If you are looking for ideas on how to bring this week alive, check out this video:
How To Celebrate Holy Week | 5 Triduum Traditions
Again let’s take an opportunity to accept these final days of Lent in joy and experience all the Lord has in store for us, our families, and our children. Here are the top five tips for celebrating Holy Week!
5 Tips For Celebrating Holy Week
1. Be Intentional. Take Time Off.
Don’t make this just another week. Dive into this week. The number one way we recommend doing this is taking time off from work. As young professionals, we fought this idea. We attended the liturgies, we participated in the activities and even helped guide our RCIA students in their final days before being welcomed home into the Catholic Church. Yet, we can say from personal experience there was a profound difference in our experience when we took the days off from work.
Use this week to double down, maybe add a sacrifice, creating extra space and silence for the Lord to grow in detachment. But remember, “Detachment is never just a letting go; it’s letting go of lesser things so that we can attach ourselves to something better, to a higher good.” (Father Mark-Mary, Habits for Holiness). Consider giving an Easter gift to a non-profit or religious community that you are passionate about.
Again, making space, giving up Social Media, TV, music, or deserts detaches us from worldly comforts to find comfort in God and create space and dedicated time for him. This week spend time meditating on the Stations of the Cross. Here our favorite images and reflections for kids. Don’t miss the Divine Mercy Novena starting on good Friday and bring a little more mercy you’re your life and world. Find intentional time between noon and 3 pm on Good Friday and consider technology and electricity outage between noon on Good Friday and Easter.
3. Make the Liturgies a Priority.
Make time and space for Holy Thursday Mass. In this liturgy, we celebrate the washing of the feet, the institution of the Eucharist, the transition into the Garden of Gethsemane, and Jesus’s arrest. Often there are beautiful opportunities for Adoration to stay awake with Jesus in the garden for one hour. Good Friday services include venerations of the cross, and some churches provide a burial of Christ or community stations. Saturday Easter Vigil is the most extraordinary liturgy of the entire year. If you have never been, consider experiencing salvation history unfold as we welcome new members into the church.
4. Activities – Great Ways to Experience the Week For the Entire Family.
Palm Sunday: Making palm branches and doing a procession, and reading Matthew 21 (our kids love screaming Hosanna). There are so many great crafts and ideas.
Holy Week: Traditions include cleaning out your home, putting together a donation, finishing Lent actives. We like to make peg dolls and find this version easy enough to let the kids do most of the work with me. We enjoy doing the passion and Easter set to talk about the characters and story in a tangible and physical activity. They also have a printable version. There are about a thousand activities with Catholic Icing—we enjoying using legos and blocks to build different scenes.
Holy Thursday: Our favorite family event of the week is a Lenten Story meal, where each item on the menu represents a section of the story of Jesus’ passion. You can also consider a Passover meal. Making unleavened bread and don’t miss a family foot washing.
Good Friday: Since Good Friday is a day of fasting, check out this article for 25 great ways to devote the day to Christ! Make sure to Pray the Stations of the Cross. Here are great reflections for kids and printable coloring pictures.
Holy Saturday: Make a paschal candle and find out here what it symbolizes. Sit around a fire and read the vigil readings and this ancient homily.
Easter Sunday: You can work on Easter crafts all eight days of the Octave. We enjoy doing resurrection eggs and resurrection story cookies on Easter its self, and then making resurrection crafts throughout the week.
5. Celebrate hard on Easter.
After you dive deep during Holy Week, it’s time to celebrate hard! The joy of Easter should permeate all eight days of the Easter octave. Before all of the brunches and time with family and friends, a great place to start is with Mass! Let’s commit to keeping the focus on Christ and the joy because “if Christ has not been raised, your faith is vain; you are still in your sins” (1 Cor 15:17). But our faith is not in vain, and he has RISEN!
For more, listen here: https://youtu.be/1r0xuqpc8sE