MERIDEN, CT (03-27-2018) – The Franciscan Sisters of the Eucharist throughout the world are continuing the Community’s tradition of celebrating Holy Week, the most sacred week of the year, by focusing on the paradoxes expressed in the Scripture readings of each day. With variations due to local customs and schedules, the Sisters incorporate traditional practices, foods and pre-liturgical presentations that highlight the events of Christ’s Passion. A few years ago, Father Mike Schmitz of the Diocese of Duluth briefly described the Sisters’ approach to Holy Week in this teaching video.
During Holy Week, the Franciscan centers, in union with the motherhouse center, are reflecting on the Church as a “family of families” in light of the need to combat the “tsunami of secularism” as expressed in the pastoral planning document of Cardinal Wuerl of the Archdiocese of Washington: “Today the environment in which we preach the Gospel is highly secularized. In the 2012 Synod on the New Evangelization, a common theme that emerged was the impact of popular culture on the way people think about faith. I have spoken of this global trend as a “tsunami of secularism” that has washed across our cultures, taking with it many foundational elements, such as appreciation of marriage and family, a basic understanding of right and wrong, and a sense of community” (p. 16).
Aware of the Church’s preparation for the upcoming Synod on Youth, the Franciscan Sisters have invited many young people to participate in the liturgies and activities of Holy Week.