THE DOVE April 2014

Holy Week & Easter

by The Rev. Dr. Jason Parkin, Rector

As we enter Holy Week, we come to the central events that shape our common faith as Christian people. The heart of the liturgical year is the Paschal Mystery, the dying and rising of Jesus. Our participation in the saving acts of God finds its deepest expression in this great Week. Our celebration of Holy Week is the occasion above all others when we stand before the awesome mystery of redemption, bringing to God all that we are both as individuals and as a community of faith at this moment in our lives.

The rites of this week are based upon sources and practices stretching back to the fourth century in the Church at Jerusalem, and even earlier. On Palm Sunday, for example, we process into church singing a jubilant hymn just as joyous crowds waved palm branches and strewed their garments in Jesus' path as he entered the holy city*. This year, we will read together the story of Christ's Passion from the Gospel of Matthew at the end of the liturgy rather than in the place of the Gospel, so that, as the service ends and we go forth into the world, we might remember that, although separated by distance and time from the Jerusalem of 2,000 years ago, we were nevertheless part of the story then, and that the story of God's redeeming work continues in us now. In essence, then, Palm Sunday gives us a concise presentation of all that we will experience in the coming week.

On Maundy Thursday, following a meal in the Great Hall reminiscent of the Last Supper, we wash one another's feet*, echoing Jesus' commandment to his disciples to love one another as he loved them, the mandatus novum, or new commandment, that he uttered while bathing their feet; and all who wish to have their feet cleansed by one of the clergy will be invited to come forward at the Maundy Thursday liturgy. The liturgy that evening concludes with the solemn Stripping of the Altar as a sign of our humility before God. The sacrament consecrated for Good Friday resides on the Altar of Repose throughout Thursday night, and all are invited to spend time in prayer and meditation through the rest of the evening and the next morning.

On Good Friday, The Stations of the Cross will be offered at 12:00 noon. This simple, ancient yet poignant rite is modeled on a custom widely observed by pilgrims to Jerusalem from the early centuries of the Church to the present day: the offering of prayers at a series of places in that city traditionally associated with Jesus' passion and death. The service will be held at the hour when Jesus was placed on the cross, and this year we will walk around the church grounds as we observe the stations.

The Good Friday Liturgy, at 7:00 p.m. is the most solemn rite of the entire Christian year. It begins in complete silence, and includes the hauntingly beautiful Passion according to St. John, sung by members of the choir and the Rector to a Gregorian chant tone. A time of extended reflection and prayer for God's world also takes place. Some of the most ancient prayers from the Church's early centuries, known as the Solemn Collects and the Reproaches, are offered before a simple wooden cross, and Communion is shared from the sacrament consecrated on Maundy Thursday.

And at the Great Vigil-the preeminent celebration of the year, and the first proclamation of the Lord's Resurrection-we begin the liturgy in darkness and light a fire by which we bless and inscribe the Paschal Candle, the symbol of the Resurrection and the light that spreads into our lives. The Exsultet, a magnificent chant recalling God's saving presence with humanity, introduces the series of sacred scripture passages, songs, and psalms that recount the history of God's saving presence in our lives and world. In the celebration of Holy Baptism, we are reminded that we are buried with Christ in his death and by it we share in His resurrection; and the Resurrection is then proclaimed. With an explosion of light, a great organ fanfare, and cries of "Alleluia, Christ is Risen," the New Day and the New Creation sing out from every voice under heaven. As one author has said, "At the Great Proclamation, all heaven breaks loose." So it does, as we celebrate with great joy the new and reconciled life made possible through the death and resurrection of Jesus the Christ. The table is spread and all are invited to the first Eucharistic feast of Easter.

Yet during Holy Week, we do not merely mimic the ancient rites of earlier Christians. Far more significant is the reminder that, like our ancestors, we share in the celebration of Holy Week so that we might once again find ourselves immersed in God's grace. It is from this week that all the other weeks of our life take their meanings.

Each of the liturgies within Holy Week contains its own unique beauty and power. Please resist the temptation to move straight from Palm Sunday to Easter. Come, take your place in the entire journey: join the crowds that shouted "Hosanna," the circle of friends who shared in that final sacred meal, the throng that saw the Christ be offered up for human brokenness. And then, like the stupefied few who were present for Jesus' rising, rejoice in the dawning of the New Day and the New Creation.

*Please note that, weather permitting, the 9:00 and 11:15 Palm Sunday services will begin outside-on the front lawn at 9:00 and in the Columbarium Courtyard at 11:15, weather permitting-for the distribution and blessing of the palms before the procession into the church. In addition, all who wish to have their feet washed by one of the clergy on Maundy Thursday will be invited to come forward at that moment in the service, rather than having one person represent all. If you think you will want to take part in this moving rite, please come prepared by wearing shoes and socks that can be easily removed.

Adult Forum in April

Our Lenten theme this year is entitled: Living as Easter People in a Lenten World. Jane Wolfe, spiritual director and retreat leader, will lead us in exercises that will help us to become Easter People in a Lenten World. Then, our forum will host our own Easter People, Wyn Gilbert and Marc Franson.

April 6th: Jane Wolfe, spiritual director and retreat leader, will lead us in some basic spiritual fitness exercises.

April 13th: Palm Sunday-no adult forum.

April 20th: Easter Sunday-no adult forum

April 27th: Easter People presentations begin with Wyn Gilbert

Jane Wolfe, a.k.a. Grandmother Willow

by Pastor Heath Howe, Family Ministries

One of Sophie's favorite movies when she was a little girl was Disney's Pocahontas. She loved all the Disney princess movies, but at one point, Pocahontas was a favorite. One time when I was leaving for an appointment, Sophie asked, "Mom, where are you going?" Read more here...

Men's Fellowship Series

The Men's Fellowship Group will meet for one last presentation on the morning of Friday, April 11th at 6:00a.m. in the Great Hall. Please note that there is no presentation scheduled for April 4th.

Holy Family Ministries Benefit

"Reach for the Stars"

You are invited to Holy Family Ministries' annual dinner and auction, "Reach for the Stars." The benefit will take place on Saturday, May 3rd at 6:00 p.m. at Skokie Country Club at 500 Washington Avenue, Glencoe. For more information, or to donate auction items, please contact Caitlin Duerinck at or register here...

Easter Outreach and Flower Offerings

During the Easter Season, we remember the gift Jesus gave us of new life, and we celebrate our blessings. It is also a time of sharing our financial abundance with those in need. It is the tradition of the parish to give the Easter offering for outreach to help those beyond our parish community. The Easter offering represents a significant portion of our support for ministries, agencies, and programs both locally and further abroad that seek to alleviate suffering and brokenness in a variety of ways. Please be as generous as possible as we share our gifts with others.

Easter Flower Donations support the Flower Guild and provides the beautiful floral decorations that grace our church during the Easter Season. Flowers may be given in memory of, or thanksgiving for, loved ones. To have your name included in the Easter bulletin, please return your flower offering envelope to the parish office by April 10.

Please look for the special mailing that will arrive soon containing envelopes for both Easter and flower donations. In addition, Easter offering envelopes will be available in the narthex and parlor.

2014 Holy Week and Easter Liturgies 

Palm Sunday, April 13*: 7:30 a.m., 9:00 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. Palm Procession and Holy Eucharist
No 5:00 p.m. Eucharist

Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of Holy Week:
9:00 a.m. Holy Eucharist

Maundy Thursday, April 17: 6:00 p.m. Agape Meal
You may respond to Laurel O'Donnell or 847-251-6120
Response sign-up is also available in the parlor.
7:00 p.m.  Holy Eucharist, Washing of the Feet, Stripping of the Altar, Watch at the Altar of Repose
Good Friday, April 18:
12:00 p.m.  Stations of the Cross
7:00 p.m.  The Good Friday Liturgy

Holy Saturday, April 19: 9:00 a.m.  Liturgy of the Word

The Great Vigil of Easter, Saturday, April 19: 8:00 p.m.  Lighting of the Paschal Candle, Holy Baptism, and Holy Eucharist

Easter Day, Sunday, April 20*: 7:30 a.m., 9:00 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. Festive Holy Eucharist, with guest musicians
Easter Egg Hunt Following the 9:00 a.m. Eucharist
No 5:00 p.m. Eucharist
*Please note that the first Eucharist on both Palm Sunday and Easter Day begins at 7:30 a.m. rather than at 8:00 a.m.

Where is God in the Loop?

Downtown Lunch Conversations

How do our lives of faith inform and influence our work lives, our careers, our business choices and actions? Is there room for God at work? If you would like to reflect on these and related issues, and to get to know better some fellow members of Holy Comforter, please join in a series of lunchtime conversations in the heart of the Loop on Friday afternoons. More information and schedule here...

Lori's Lessons: What Parkinson's Teaches

About Life and Love

May 4th, 2:00 - 5:00 p.m.: Book Signing at The Bookstall at Chestnut Court

Many in the parish are aware that our beloved Lori Patin was diagnosed with Parkinson's over 15 years ago. Not as many, however, know that a book has been published chronicling Lori's journey with the disease. Read more here...


by Mary Johnson, Director of Children's Ministries

I'll admit that over the years I have allowed myself the-dare I say luxury-of outsourcing certain responsibilities. But then I came across an invitation to parents to enroll their children ages 8-14 in an etiquette class that for the most part, makes no sense to me.
Read more here..

Jesus Is Risen Today!

by Derek E. Nickels, Director of Music

The dramatic readings of Holy Week and Easter provide the basis for some of the most dramatic musical compositions of the Church Year. Among them is a piece of music that commands a powerful place in this important liturgy, The Exsultet.
Read more here...

‘Twas the Week before Holy Week!

by Charlotte Long, Youth Ministry

People throughout the Bible make pilgrimages to Holy places to be with God. We don't have much of a pilgrimage tradition in the Episcopal Church. So, until you and I find our own personal Holy Place on this globe, why may we not have "thin times" instead?
Read more here...

In the Vineyard...

Our prayers and sympathy go out to Hugh and Lisa Abrams on the death of Lisa's mother, Mary M. Lovekamp, on February 14. Mrs. Lovekamp's funeral was held at Our Savior's Lutheran Church in Springfield, Illinois, and she was buried Trinity Lutheran Cemetery in Arenzville, IL. May God embrace Mary with peace, wholeness, joy, and love.

Long-time former parishioner Don Reid died on February 17 in Barrington. An active member of CHC for 25 years, Don recently lived in Wauconda, and his funeral was offered at Messiah Lutheran Church in that community on March 29. Please hold Don's extended family in your hearts and prayers as he is welcomed to his new abode in the Kingdom.

Our prayers and condolences go out to Janet Drake and to George Drake and his family on the death Tuesday, February 25, of Janet's younger sister and George's aunt, Marcia Lewis, in Oklahoma. A celebration of her life took place at First Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tulsa. May God enfold Marcia in peace and joy now and forevermore.

We also extend love and condolences to Mimi Iams on the death of her mother, Mary Elizabeth (but known to all as Bette) Martin, on Sunday, March 16, at the age of 99. Bette was a member of St. Matthew's Church in Evanston for over 60 years, and had many friends at Holy Comforter. A Memorial service was held at Elliott Chapel at The Presbyterian Home in Evanston on Saturday, March 29th. Please keep Mimi, Paul, and their extended family in your hearts.

And we give thanks for the birth of Wilson Alexander Haljun, who was born in San Francisco on March 19. Wilson is the son of Jim and Alison Haljun, and the grandson of Bill and Barbara Haljun. Also rejoicing is Aunt Jenny Haljun. He weighed in at 7 pounds, 15 ounces, and is already beloved of his sisters Curran and Blaney. Welcome, young Wilson!