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Cardinal celebrates Easter Triduum at cathedral


  • Holy Thursday -- During the Mass on Holy Thursday, Cardinal O’Malley washes the feet of members of the congregation, following the example of Christ who washed the feet of his disciples as a symbol of service. Pilot photo/Jacqueline Tetrault
  • Holy Thursday -- Following the Mass, the Blessed Sacrament is brought to the altar of repose for adoration in the chapel of the cathedral. Following the Holy Thursday Mass, the Eucharist will not be celebrated again until the Easter Vigil. Pilot photo/Jacqueline Tetrault
  • Good Friday -- Cardinal O’Malley venerates the cross. The veneration is performed in acknowledgment that Christ, through his sufferings on the cross, redeemed our sins and brought us to new life in his resurrection. Pilot photo/Jacqueline Tetrault
  • Easter Vigil -- Cardinal O’Malley lights the paschal candle during the Service of Light, which begins the Easter Vigil. Following the blessing of the fire, the celebrants and the assembly enter the darkened church holding candles lit from the Easter fire, symbolizing the light of Christ entering the world. Pilot photo/Jacqueline Tetrault
  • Easter Vigil -- Those who have been preparing for baptism, called catechumens, are traditionally received into the Church at the Easter Vigil. Candidates, those who are baptized but not Catholic, are also received into the Church at the vigil. Pilot photo/Jacqueline Tetrault

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With the renovations of the Cathedral of the Holy Cross complete, Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley once again led services for the Easter Triduum in the upper church of the cathedral.

The Triduum consists of Holy Thursday, when Christ washed the feet of his Apostles and instituted the Eucharist; Good Friday, the day of Jesus' crucifixion and death for the sins of the world; and Easter, which begins with the Easter Vigil on the night of Holy Saturday and in which the Church celebrates Christ's Resurrection from the dead.

The Easter Vigil includes the blessing of the Easter fire, lighting of the Paschal Candle and the Liturgy of the Word, which includes readings from the Old Testament highlighting salvation history, the first chanting of the Alleluia since the beginning of Lent and the Easter Gospel.

Following the Liturgy of the Word, catechumens and candidates are fully received into the Church through reception of the sacraments of baptism, the Eucharist and confirmation.

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