Holy Week

The ECM IU Holy Week service schedule is below. All services are at Canterbury House (719 E 7th St). Printable version of this page.

note: ECM will celebrate Easter at the vigil. There will be no Easter Sunday service.

5:30pm, Evening Prayer
5:30pm, Evening Prayer
7pm, Tenebrae
5:30pm, Maundy Thursday: Community Dinner, Footwashing, Mass, and Stripping of the Altar
Good Friday
12pm, Solemn Liturgy
8:00pm, The Great Vigil of Easter


The name Tenebrae (the Latin word for “darkness” or “shadows”) has for centuries been applied to the ancient monastic night and early morning services (Matins and Lauds) of the last three days of Holy Week, which in medieval times came to be celebrated on the preceding evenings.

Apart from the chant of the Lamentations (in which each verse is introduced by a letter of the Hebrew alphabet), the most conspicuous feature of the service is the gradual extinguishing of candles and other lights in the church until only a single candle, considered a symbol of our Lord, remains. Toward the end of the service this candle is hidden, typifying the apparent victory of the forces of evil. At the very end, a loud noise is made, symbolizing the earthquake at the time of the resurrection (Matthew 28:2), the hidden candle is restored to its place, and by its light all depart in silence.

Tenebrae provides an extended meditation upon, and a prelude to, the events in our Lord’s life between the Last Supper and the Resurrection. (Note from the Book of Occasional Services, 1991).

Night Watch

The ancient custom of Nightwatch and spending an hour with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament will be observed tonight, following the stripping of the altar. This watch before the Altar of Repose begins at 9:00 p.m. and concludes at 8:00 a.m. tomorrow morning (Friday). During this time the consecrated elements will be reverently displayed. This may be done either by covering the consecrated elements on the paten and in the chalice, or by displaying the consecrated Host in a monstrance, a standing receptacle with a transparent center container, or luna.

In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus asked the sorrowful question, “Could you not watch with me one hour?” For us, as for the disciples, it is a time to remain awake and to watch with the Lord as He suffers his agony in the Garden. There are no prescribed prayers for this spiritual discipline. However, we shall make available a series of prayers for the Holy Hour, taken from St. Augustine’s Prayer Book, a devotional guide published by the Episcopal Order of the Holy Cross.

You may sign up for one hour (or more, or simply stay longer) as you desire. For safety considerations, we ask that you enter the Chaplain’s office door (wooden door off Park Street) and go up into the Chapel through the Chaplain’s office. The sign-up sheet is on the table in the Canterbury Chapel.

The Great Vigil of Easter

The Great Vigil is the first service of Easter Day, and it is to be celebrated between sunset on Holy Saturday and sunrise on Easter Morning. The service has four parts:

  1. The Service of Light (lighting of the Paschal Candle)
  2. The Service of Lessons, or liturgy of the Word
  3. Christian Initiation (Baptism). and/or the Renewal of Baptismal Vows
  4. The Celebration of Holy Communion with the administration of Easter Communion.