Tenebrae, from the Latin word for “shadows,” has been observed in the church of Jesus Christ since the fourth century on Maundy Thursday or Good Friday. During the service, different readers will recall the events that led Jesus to the cross, and we will extinguish fourteen candles, one by one, dramatizing the suffering and death of Jesus. The diminishing light symbolizes the fading devotion of the disciples and the sin of the world. At the end of the service the worship center will be dark. During the service, the chimes will toll thirty-three times to signal Jesus’ thirty three years. The Christ candle will then return, symbolizing the hope of his promised resurrection. At the conclusion of the service, please leave silently, contemplating Christ’s crucifixion. Jesus, the Son of God, was dead.
GOOD FRIDAY SERVICE
TENNEBRAE AND HOLY COMMUNION
GATHERING IN THE LORD’S NAME
In silence and meditation prepare yourself for worship
Once the candles have been lit, please be respectful of that sign as the beginning of worship by refraining from conversation with those around you so that all may enter into a time of silent preparation for worship.
We are a small, rural Presbyterian church in southwestern Pennsylvania.