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Tenebrę [Holy Week Service]
Women of Faith and Family ^ | n/a | W F-F.org

Posted on 03/26/2007 6:08:07 PM PDT by Salvation

Tenebræ

The Latin word Tenebræ means "darkness." Tenebræ is very ancient service of prayers in the Church which takes place during the darkness of night. Many parishes are now reviving this extraordinarily moving service which consists of three sets of Psalms and verses from the Lamentations of Jeremiah chanted on each of three nights of Holy Week: Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. (Originally this was a service of Matins said in monasteries before dawn on Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday; but it customarily takes place the evenings before.)

The service begins with the nave of the church in darkness, except for a candelabrum on a stand in the sanctuary, usually containing fifteen candles arranged in an inverted `v', called a `Tenebræ hearse.' As each lamentation, introduced with a letter of the Hebrew alphabet, is chanted one of the candles is extinguished until only one, representing the Light of Christ remains. Then this is extinguished, leaving the church in darkness. The ministers and cantor leave the sanctuary, and a loud noise like a thunderclap (representing the earthquake during the Crucifixion) is heard; after which a single candle representing the Light of Christ is brought in, placed on the altar and the people leave in silence.

This is a very impressive service, and we hope you are able to attend with your children at least once during the Triduum. If your parish does not have Tenebræ it is worth trying to find a place that does.

If you have young children you might consider using the adaptation of this service in this book, Stations of the Cross. It is by no means as powerful as real Tenebræ, celebrated in church, but it does retain the symbolism of Christ as our Light, and it may be a workable substitute if your children are little or if the real service is not available where you live. (See Stations of the Cross.)


 



TOPICS: Catholic; History; Prayer; Religion & Culture; Worship
KEYWORDS: catholiclist; tenebrae; triduum
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Very interesting to me.

For your consideration and discussion

1 posted on 03/26/2007 6:08:09 PM PDT by Salvation
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To: Knitting A Conundrum

Are these the Lamentations you were talking about?


2 posted on 03/26/2007 6:09:45 PM PDT by Salvation (" With God all things are possible. ")
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To: nickcarraway; sandyeggo; Lady In Blue; NYer; american colleen; ELS; Pyro7480; livius; ...
Catholic Discussion Ping!

Please notify me via FReepmail if you would like to be added to or taken off the Catholic Discussion Ping List.

3 posted on 03/26/2007 6:11:30 PM PDT by Salvation (" With God all things are possible. ")
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To: Salvation
Tenebræ

Holy Week and the Triduum

Passion (Palm) Sunday

Passiontide and Holy Week

Why Do We Call it the Passion?

The Easter Triduum

The Easter Triduum: Entering into the Paschal Mystery

Holy Week Starts Today - Hosanna to the King of Kings!

The Meaning of Holy Week

The Chrism Mass

Pope Opens Holy Week With Palm Sunday Mass

Holy Week Recovers Celebration of Penance (at St. Peter's Basilica) - photos!

We Will Relive the Passion, Death and Resurrection [Audience with Pope Benedict XVI]

Spiritual Reading for the Sacred Triduum and Easter

Cardinal Arinze on How to Live Holy Week - Urges Spirit of Faith and Gratitude

The Triduum and 40 Days

4 posted on 03/26/2007 6:12:15 PM PDT by Salvation (" With God all things are possible. ")
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To: Salvation

Can Protestants attend? We tend to gloss over the literature of the Old Testament, admittedly. Sounds like a wonderful service.


5 posted on 03/26/2007 6:15:11 PM PDT by IslandJeff (There will be Democrats in heaven, except they'll be too busy organizing the staff)
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To: Salvation

This does sound interesting. I will enquire if my local parishes have such a service.


6 posted on 03/26/2007 6:16:50 PM PDT by pissant (Crush the treasonous democrats)
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To: IslandJeff

of course Protestants can attend. As the article says, more congregations are picking this up. It sounds so inspiring.


7 posted on 03/26/2007 6:20:38 PM PDT by Salvation (" With God all things are possible. ")
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To: IslandJeff

I especially liked the one candle being brought back into the sanctuary, representing the coming of Jesus Christ, the true Light!


8 posted on 03/26/2007 6:21:42 PM PDT by Salvation (" With God all things are possible. ")
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To: Salvation

You guys have about a thousand-and-a-half years on us in spiritual tradition and ceremony. That rocks.


9 posted on 03/26/2007 6:23:30 PM PDT by IslandJeff (There will be Democrats in heaven, except they'll be too busy organizing the staff)
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To: Salvation

Thank you. As a Catholic for 50 years, I've never heard of this service. It sounds impressive.


10 posted on 03/26/2007 6:41:37 PM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
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To: Salvation

I don't know...they've been doing them on Fridays all through lent, but I haven't made them yet...sigh


11 posted on 03/26/2007 6:42:07 PM PDT by Knitting A Conundrum (Act Justly, Love Mercy, and Walk Humbly With God Micah 6:8)
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To: IslandJeff

Episcopal/Anglican churches also have this service on the Wednesday of Holy Week. It's very moving and very beautiful.


12 posted on 03/26/2007 6:47:26 PM PDT by kellynch ("Our only freedom is the freedom to discipline ourselves." -- Bernard Baruch)
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To: Salvation

In Orthodoxy we chant the Lamentations on Great Friday evening as part of the Matins for Great Saturday by anticipation.


13 posted on 03/26/2007 7:08:30 PM PDT by Kolokotronis (Christ is Risen, and you, o death, are annihilated!)
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To: Salvation
Sounds interesting to me, and reminds me of my family motto...


14 posted on 03/26/2007 7:19:51 PM PDT by Theoden (Interdum feror cupidine partium magnarum europe vincendarum!)
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To: Theoden

Light in ?????


15 posted on 03/26/2007 7:57:01 PM PDT by Salvation (" With God all things are possible. ")
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To: Salvation

Excellent post. Thank you, Salvation.


16 posted on 03/26/2007 7:59:06 PM PDT by Siobhan (Putting human genes into animals and plants will result in our nations being destroyed by God.)
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To: Siobhan

Thank you.

Does your church celebrate this darkness to one light evening?


17 posted on 03/26/2007 8:38:22 PM PDT by Salvation (" With God all things are possible. ")
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To: Salvation

darkness. Light in Darkness.


18 posted on 03/26/2007 9:05:31 PM PDT by bboop (Stealth Tutor)
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To: Salvation

Our Tenebrae service is on Good Friday evening. We will be attending this year.


19 posted on 03/27/2007 2:13:18 AM PDT by Miss Marple (Prayers for Jemian's son,: Lord, please keep him safe and bring him home .)
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To: Salvation

A friend has invited me to attend a Tenebrae service on the evening of Palm Sunday at St. Mary of the Assumption Church in Waterford.


20 posted on 03/27/2007 6:26:06 AM PDT by NYer ("Where the bishop is present, there is the Catholic Church" - Ignatius of Antioch)
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