At our liturgies throughout Lent and Easter, we recite the ancient, baptismal Apostles’ Creed, which begins with the words: “I believe in God …  The church describes Lent as a season which asks us to recall our own baptism as we journey with those preparing for their baptism at the Easter Vigil.  And, in the spirit of penance, Lent is a time to reflect on God’s word and the meaning of the Pascal mystery, the dying and rising of Christ, in our own lives.  So, this Lent, let us grow deeper into this meaning ….

Lenten Services & Easter Masses

Ash Wednesday

Mass 9:00am in church
Prayer services 7:00am, 12:00 noon, 5:30pm and 7:00pm

 

Penance Services

Monday, March 18, 7:00pm in church
Wednesday, March 20, 11:00am in church

 

Liturgy of the Hours

Office of Readings

Wednesdays, March 13, 20, 27, April 3, 10
6:30-7:00pm in the church
Refreshments available at 6:00pm
in Anthony Hall Founders Room.

Contact: tim.hetzel@stfrancisraleigh.org

 The Liturgy of the Hours, also known as the Divine Office is a beautiful and ancient tradition in the Church that is not reserved for priests and religious, but can also be prayed by the lay faithful. The Second Vatican Council highly encouraged the laity to “recite the divine office, either with the priests, or among themselves, or even individually” (Sacrosanctum Concilium, 100). One of the special forms of prayer in the Liturgy of the Hours that is particularly Lenten is the Office of Readings. Like Morning Prayer and Evening Prayer it is part of the cycle of prayer the Church asks all the faithful to observe during the day. But unlike Morning or Evening Prayer, the Office of Readings can be prayed at any time during the day, and it focuses upon scriptural and non-scriptural readings. The Office has a similar origin with the Liturgy of the Word proclaimed at the Easter Vigil in the ancient Church. During the Season of Lent, the whole of salvation history is proclaimed in the Office of Readings along with commentary on this history from some of the ancient writers of the early Church. Please join us on Wednesday evenings  to enjoy some refreshments and pray this ancient and beautiful liturgy whose prayer will lead us into the Triduum and the celebration of the Easter Vigil.

Holy Week

Lent has been a time to remember who we are and whose we are as a people of good news of Jesus Christ. Through prayer, fasting, and almsgiving we have sought to readjust and reorient our lives as believers so that we might be strengthened more fully into a people called and gifted for mission in the world. During Lent, we have journeyed with those who are preparing for the Easter sacraments when we, too, remember our baptism and renew our baptismal promises. Our witness to the Elect and Candidates for Full Communion and prayer for them has brought them to these days of transformation. Triduum, a period of three days (Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy Saturday), is a celebration of the Church throughout the world. It is a time to remember specifically the great events that won for us salvation and to celebrate Christ’s and our own victory over death.

Lenten Tenebrae Service

Wednesday, April 17
6:30pm in the church
Refreshments available at 6:00pm
in Anthony Hall Founders Room
Contact: tim.hetzel@stfrancisraleigh.org

Come and pray with us at the Lenten Tenebrae Service as we prepare to celebrate the holiest days of the Church year, the Triduum; three days marking Jesus’ passion and resurrection. Tenebrae, meaning “darkness” or “shadows” in Latin is a traditional prayer of the Church that reflects the darkness of Good Friday with the gradual extinguishing of light.

Holy Thursday

Morning Prayer—9:00am (in the church)
Mass of the Lord’s Supper—7:00pm, Night Prayer and
Reposition of the Blessed Sacrament until 12:00 midnight
On this day we celebrate the Mass of the Lord’s Supper.
This liturgy celebrates the institution of the Eucharist, recalling Christ’s words to his disciples on the night before he died.
After Mass, there will be adoration of the Blessed Sacrament until 12:00 midnight in Clare Fellowship Hall.

 

Good Friday

Morning Prayer—9:00am (in church)
Good Friday of the Lord’s Passion—3:00pm
Stations of the Cross —7:00pm

On this one day of the year that the Eucharist is not celebrated, we rather celebrate the passion of the Lord in the afternoon hours, when scripture says our Lord died. The liturgy is marked by the reading of the Passion of our Lord Jesus from the Gospel of John, the ancient General intercessions that pray for the needs of people everywhere, and the Veneration of the Cross.

 

Holy Saturday

Morning Prayer—9:00am (in church)
Easter food blessing—10:00am (in memorial garden)
Easter Vigil in the Holy Night of Easter—8:30pm

The great period of the Triduum culminates with the celebration of the “most solemn night”, the night that marks our Lord’s passover from death to life. At this celebration we continue the ancient tradition of the early Church of keeping vigil for the fulfillment of God’s promises in this time and place. The liturgy is marked by four movements: the Service of Light, where new fire is kindled and the Easter Candle is prepared and processed into the church; the Liturgy of the Word, where our salvation history is revealed; the Rites of Initiation, where our Elect are baptized and they and the candidates for full communion are welcomed formally into the community of faith; and the celebration of the first Eucharist of Easter, where those newly baptized and confirmed join us, for the first time, at the table of the Lord.

 

Easter Sunday

The Resurrection of the Lord

6:00am (in the memorial garden)

7:30am (in the church)

9:30am (in both the church and gym)

11:30am (in both the church and gym)

 

Lenten Formation Opportunities

Homily Helpers with Fr. Steve Kluge

Mondays, March 4, 11, 18, 25, April 1, 8, 15
9:45-10:30am in Padua Room of the Assisi Community Center
To register for this FREE series, visit https://form.jotform.com/90414246203143
Contact: jennifer.fiduccia@stfrancisraleigh.org

 For many of us Lent is a time of “giving things up” a time of fasting and abstinence, a 40 day desert experience. Yet the desert is also the place one can rest in the oasis. This Lent find some refreshment in the oasis of the Sunday scriptures. Join Fr. Steve Kluge as we open the Sunday readings and offer our insights and help in the creation of the homily.

Lent: A Season of Transformation Bible Study with Fr. Steve Patti and Jenn Fiduccia

Tuesdays, March 19, 26, April 9
7:00-8:30pm in Anthony Hall Founders Room
Cost: $12 (includes study materials and hospitality)
Contact: jennifer.fiduccia@stfrancisraleigh.org

 During Lent, we strive to free ourselves from all kinds of clutter-material and spiritual-in order to focus on God and turn back to Him with our whole hearts. If this “turning back” is genuine, it will be a reorientation, a transformation. To help us enter into this season, Fr. Steve Patti and Jenn Fiduccia will guide participants in exploring three key moments in the life and ministry of Jesus. The result will be a better understanding of the authentic transformation that God calls each of us to embrace as individuals and as a community and a renewed desire to live God’s own outward-looking, self-emptying, laying-down-one’s-life kind of love. Visit https://membership.faithdirect.net/events/details/2771

Fifteen Steps out of Darkness with Kathleen Owen and Fr. Jim Sabak

Wednesdays, March 13, 20, 27, April 3, 10, 17
7:00pm in Padua Room of the Assisi Community Center
Contact: kathleen.owen@stfrancisraleigh.org

Using the book, “Fifteen Steps Out of Darkness: The Way of The Cross for People on The Journey of Mental Illness” by Scott Rose, Fred Wenner, and Al Rose, we gather to discuss the parallels between Jesus’ walk to the cross and the journey of those living with mental illness and to share stories of hope, inspiration, and encouragement for those with mental illness and the people who love them.

Unraveling the Three Days – The Paschal Triduum Explained with Fr. Jim Sabak

Thursdays, March 21, 28, April 4
7:00-8:30pm in the church.
To register for this FREE series, visit https://form.jotform.com/90413904849159
Contact: jennifer.fiduccia@stfrancisraleigh.org

Join Fr. Jim to explore the power of depth and meaning contained in the liturgical celebrations of Holy Thursday, Good Friday, and the Easter Vigil/Easter Sunday. These days, the highest and most important of all days in the Church’s calendar are the core and central reason for why the faith we are gifted with exists. If we are to understand and live this faith authentically, then we must continually deepen our understanding and grasp of what it means for Jesus to be crucified and raised up. Many times we simply attend one or the other of these days and nothing more because we believe we are fulfilling an obligation of sorts. By journeying through the liturgies of each of these days and their theological contexts, we will see that these are days of awe and wonder, not merely obligations to fulfill. With a fuller appreciation for the power and dynamism contained in each of these days, we may enter into them ready to be touched and affected, impacted, and transformed by the wonder of God to which they draw us. A more fruitful Easter Season and Christian life can then follow.

Lenten Activities

Stations and Suppers

Fridays, March 8, 15, 22, 29, April 5, 12
6:00 – 7:00pm Assisi Café will be open
7:00 – 7:30pm Stations in the church

The Assisi Café will be open and serving simple Lenten meals of soup, salad, and bread for a nominal fee per person.  
No pre-registration required.
Stations will follow in the church each Friday during Lent. 
Contact: tim.hetzel@stfrancisraleigh.org

Franciscan Fellowship in Lenten Prayer

Lent is an especially important time of preparation for those in the church’s RCIA process who will enter the Church at the Easter Vigil. As we walk with these individuals who are preparing to profess our faith, we are invited to consider our own belief. As we dare to believe in God, we are invited to ask ourselves what God is calling us to do. One way we can respond to this call is to lift up one another through prayer. We have created an intentional way for our family here at St. Francis to do this for our RCIA catechumens and candidates. This year, instead of having donuts after Masses during Lent, we will instead have prayer cards that contain information about our RCIA catechumens and candidates. We invite you to pick up a prayer card and pray for these special individuals as they prepare to enter the Church at Easter.Just as late winter brings about the desire for cleaning and purging our homes in anticipation for Spring, our hearts naturally yearn for restoration… we know something good is coming, but this ‘good’ requires something of us. The camaraderie of joining with the family here at St. Francis in prayer will make the Lenten journey more fulfilling and beautiful. There is a secret, whispering joy about Lent and how blessed we are to be sharing this with each other and with those who are coming into this home of faith.

The Living Tree: Be Called to____________

During Lent, the Stewardship Committee invites you to participate in its inaugural Living Tree. The tree will be available in Clare Hall and its “leaves” (i.e., tags) will focus on fasting, prayer, and almsgiving stewardship opportunities in the spirit of the Lenten season. It will also be designed to increase awareness of St. Francis’ various ministries. Please take a tag during Lent to support and learn about our parish ministries; perhaps you will discern a call to be a part of a ministry that will take flight at Pentecost.

In our home: See how we are called

Homes are more than places to live in. Not only do they keep us dry and warm, but they also house a whole host of other memories, comforts, and communities – things that resonate with us on a deep and symbolic level.  During Lent, the Stewardship Committee will be installing pictures throughout our parish home that depict our community members engaging in diverse stewardship activities. These photos will be hung in Clare Fellowship Hall and at the Assisi Community Center.  We invite everyone to enjoy these beautiful images that reflect the work and hearts of our St. Francis

Call St. Francis