ST. LOUIS – The St. Louis community is invited to join Archbishop Robert J. Carlson and Roman Catholics in the Archdiocese of St. Louis and around the world in the solemn celebration of Holy Week, which began with Palm Sunday on March 20.
The week is highlighted by the commemoration of the Last Supper on Holy Thursday, Christ’s Passion and death on Good Friday, and culminates in the joy of His resurrection on Easter Sunday.
A diverse selection of Holy Week celebrations can be found in the Archdiocese of St. Louis, with liturgies and services in nine different languages, including English, Spanish, and Latin; the principal celebrations of Holy Week take place at the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis.
For a listing of convenient locations and times of Holy Week and Easter celebrations, including those at the Cathedral Basilica, please contact the Office of Communications and Planning.
FOR REFERENCE PURPOSES: Holy Week is the week preceding Easter and the final week of Lent, beginning with Palm Sunday and ending with Holy Saturday, the day before Easter Sunday. Holy Week includes:
Palm Sunday, the Sunday before Easter, commemorates Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem.
Holy Wednesday or Spy Wednesday, in reference to Judas Iscariot's intent to betray Jesus.
Triduum: Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy Saturday, are known as the Triduum-- the period which commemorates the Passion and death of Christ.
Holy Thursday, which commemorates the Last Supper and initiates the Easter Triduum. This Mass is normally celebrated in the evening, which, according to Jewish tradition, is when Friday begins, as the Last Supper was held on the feast of Passover.
Good Friday commemorates Christ’s passion, crucifixion, and death in reparation for the sins of all mankind.
Holy Saturday, or the Easter Vigil, is the final day of Lent, of Holy Week, and of the Easter Triduum, and is the day we commemorate Christ lying in the tomb. The Easter Vigil Mass, takes place after sundown on Holy Saturday, actually belongs to Easter Sunday, since liturgically each day begins at sundown on the previous day. The ceremonies of the Easter Vigil include the blessing of new fire and the lighting of the Easter Candle, also known as the Paschal Candle.
Easter Sunday is the principal feast of the ecclesiastical year, commemorating the resurrection of Christ. Easter is also the oldest feast of the Christian Church, as old as Christianity, the connecting link between the Old and New Testaments. We celebrate Christ’s resurrection as the moment where salvation was given to all who believe.