Pascal Cycle

All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by his great mercy that we have been born again because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Now we live with great expectation, and we have a priceless inheritance—an inheritance that is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay.  1 Peter 1:3


what is the pascal cycle?

The Pascal Cycle invites us into the mysterious sacrificial life, death & resurrection of Jesus. It begins with Ash Wednesday, which ushers in the six week season of Lent. Holy Week starts the Sunday before Easter. During Holy Week, we journey through the Passion of Christ beginning with Palm Sunday, moving to Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday, and finally - Hallelujah! - Easter Sunday! Easter Sunday begins a feasting season of Eastertide and it continues for 50 days until Pentecost Sunday.

why is celebrating Lent, Holy Week & Easter important?

Lent is an opportunity to collectively contemplate the suffering, death, and resurrection of Jesus, in our personal lives and as a congregation.  It is a time of re-centering and “spiritual spring-cleaning” when we humbly practice prayer, fasting, and almsgiving to help us listen and repent for the ways we have sinned and wandered away, so that we can be fully reconciled to Christ and one another. Often we simplify and clear out time and space during this season of renewal, anticipating new depth and maturity to be formed in us as we walk with Jesus and one another toward the cross and resurrection. There are 40 days in Lent for fasting - Sundays are traditionally Sabbath feast days, so feel free to lift your fasts during Sundays in Lent!

A great fifty-day feast (sometimes called “Eastertide”) kicks off on Easter Day and finishes on Pentecost Sunday. Easter is the high point of the Church Year, reflected in the fact that our Lenten fast only lasts forty days (not including Sundays), while Easter is fifty days. During Eastertide we celebrate the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, who overcame death and opened to us the gate of everlasting life. It makes sense that we would party for so long!  After all, the main point of the whole gospel is to prepare us for an eternal celebration and the Great Feast of the Lamb! So let the feasting begin!


Renew your commitment to some sort of daily lectionary reading:

Arrange a formal confession with Father Brian or Father Miguel.

Practice a morning greeting before you get out of bed.  Something like this: Bless the Lord who forgives all our sins. His mercy endures forever!

Practice a nightly examen:

Choose a prayer from the "Occasional Prayers" section of the Book of Common Prayer to focus on for the season (page 642...)


  • Eat low-cost meals throughout Lent and put the money you save into a jar for a special cause.
  • Ask God what thing in your life you need a fast from: a certain food or drink, habit, social media, way of spending time, etc. and offer that sacrifice to Him this Lent.  Share your intention with a friend.
  • Cover or remove signs of spring and life from your home.  Put plants away, cover crosses, icons, and pictures with cloths.  Think of this as a type of fasting.  They will come again in glory, but for now intensify your anticipated joy by removing them from your vision.  Their absence now makes their return on Easter Sunday a more powerful source of joy.
  • Limit your shopping to absolute necessities.  Notice what arises in you and respond as God leads.
  • Give up eating from restaurants.  Donate the money you save to a worthy cause.
  • Visit, call or send a written note instead of text or email. 
  • As much as possible, eat out of your pantry and freezer for Lent.
  • Turn off lights and devices after 8pm.  Use candles.


  • Begin tithing, if you haven't made that a practice yet.
  • Each day of Lent, put something in a box to give away.
  • Eat low-cost meals throughout Lent and put the money you save into a jar for a special cause.
  • Give up eating from restaurants.  Donate the money you save to a worthy cause.
  • Ask God to show you an individual or organization that needs financial support this Lent.  Do what He says.

reminders & rituals

Daily candle lighting litany:Bring a focus to the season at mealtime with a simple centerpiece: a purple candle and any other simple decoration.  Light the candle at the start of a meal.  Or you could have 6 candles representing the 6 weeks of Lent.  Each week, snuff out 1 candle as a way to mark the time. 

At mealtime, recite this litany or something similar:

Candle lighter: Create in me a clean heart, O God.Response: And renew a right spirit within me.

Plant flower bulbs in a pot in your home:
As you care for them and observe them, meditate on the mystery of death and growth, life beginning in the dark, searching for light, and bursting forth from the dirt.​
Make a simple bracelet...
to wear throughout Lent as a reminder of your dependance on Christ.

Print out or memorize a prayer of repentance:

recite it as you clean the house, wash dishes, brush your teeth, or take a shower. 

Palm Sunday

Palm Sunday marks the beginning of Holy Week. The procession with palms, which was already observed in Jerusalem in the fourth century, calls to mind the triumphal entry of Jesus, our Lord and King, into Jerusalem. The procession is an act of worship, witness, and devotion to our Lord.  The purpose of Jesus’ journey to Jerusalem was to fulfill his Father’s will; thus it is fitting that this service continues with the reading of the Passion Gospel in which the whole story of the Holy Week is anticipated. We who hail Jesus as King one moment, may in the next deny him, even joining with the crowd in shouting, “Crucify him!”


  • Worship with All Saints

  • Go for a walk carrying your palms

  • If you have young children, read the story from your favorite story Bible.  With chalk, draw a path of palms and coats leading to Jerusalem on your driveway or sidewalk.  Encourage the kids imagine!

  • Meditate on Matthew 21:1-9, Mark 11:1-10, Luke 19:28-40 or John 12:12-15.

Maundy Thursday

Maundy Thursday receives its name from the mandatum (commandment) given by our Lord: “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another” (JOHN 13:34). At the Last Supper, Jesus washed his disciples’ feet and commanded them to love and serve one another as he had done. This day commemorates the Lord’s example of servant ministry, the institution of the Eucharist, the agony in the Garden of Gethsemane, and the betrayal leading to the crucifixion.


  • Worship with All Saints
  • Meditate on John 13:1-20 and ask God how he is inviting you to love

Good Friday

The Good Friday liturgy is the second part of the Triduum (the sacred three days, with Maundy Thursday and Holy Saturday). This most somber of all days is appropriately marked by fasting, abstinence, and penitence, leading us to focus on Jesus and the meaning of his Cross. Some churches do not use musical instruments or bells on this day. The church is often darkened. The bare, stark appearance of the church serves as a reminder of the solemnity and the sorrow of the day. The Lord of Life was rejected, mocked, scourged, and then put to death on the Cross. The faithful are reminded of the role which their own sin played in this suffering and agony, as Christ took all sin upon himself, in obedience to his Father’s will. By the Cross we are redeemed, set free from bondage to sin and death. The Cross is a sign of God’s never-ending love for us. It is a sign of life, in the midst of death.


  • All Saints hosts Stations of the Cross and a Good Friday service. Check in for details.
  • Clergy will be available to hear Confessions on this day.
  • Consider building a resurrection garden out of things found in the yard or a park.  
  • Turn off electric lights to remember the darkness that came upon the earth at Jesus' death.  Use candles if you need light from Good Friday through Easter morning.
  • Practice silence and/or fasting for part or all of the day.

Holy Saturday

On Holy Saturday, we remember the time that Christ spent in the grave.  The day when his disciples were scattered, afraid, and confused.  The day of darkness, despair, and lost hope.  We are invited to practice living in the tension between the cross and the empty tomb.  

  • Join All Saints for the Holy Saturday liturgy.
  • A simple Holy Saturday liturgy is on page 578 of the BCP.
  • Meditate on Psalm 88.
  • Practice silence and/or fasting for part or all of the day.
  • Make "empty tomb" cookies on Saturday night, that will be ready for Easter day.

Easter Sunday

  • Make "empty tomb" cookies on Saturday night, that will be ready for Easter day.

  • Wake up early and head outside to watch the sunrise from a good spot.

  • Dress up and attend worship & baptism with All Saints! Bring flowers to decorate the cross and altar during the service.

  • Prepare and enjoy a feast!

  • Plan for your Easter Season celebrations!



Practice hospitality! 

Splurge on special food & drink!

Purchase thoughtful gifts for the people in your life!

Plan special outings or dates with someone you love!

notice life around you

Go on a hike and look for signs of new life.  Sketch or take pictures of what you find. Learn the names of the flowers, plants, creatures and trees you see.

Plant a garden, flower pot or "resurrection garden."

What brings you joy? How could you make more space for that in your life?

creative suggestions

  • Make a fire in the back yard and have fish and bread, like Jesus and Peter did, after Jesus was raised from the dead and visited his disciples.  Read John 21:1-19 together.
  • Decorate your home with flowers, a homemade banner, or a special centerpiece at the table. 
  • Make resurrection rolls from scratch or here is an easy version.
  • Begin your days or meals with, "The Lord is Risen!" and "He is Risen Indeed!"
  • Splurge on a new pair of shoes, hat or outfit for worship.