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Holy Week – Good Friday

Many years ago on Holy Thursday I attended the service in a large stone church in the Medical Center in Houston. I went in, wondering if I really believed, and something happened in the course of the service. The priests stripped the altar and left the Sanctuary in dark and silence. The doors to the street opened and I could hear the sound of traffic. And I walked out a believer.


Holy Week reminds me of my days as a teenage chorister walking up the hill to church in the twilight of an early spring evening. I was more aware of the birdsong & a sense that nature was beginning to wake up than I was of the meaning of the liturgy. But I did feel the sadness of “Drop, drop slow tears”(Orlando Gibbons).

Maybe my teenage hormones recognized the possibility of change in the world and in me. Now I understand the enormity of sacrifice for my sake and it makes my need to change or grow closer to my Saviour that much more urgent.


Drop, Drop Slow Tears

Drop, drop, slow tears,
And bathe those beauteous feet,
Which brought from Heav’n
The news and Prince of Peace.

Cease not, wet tears,
His mercies to entreat;
To cry for vengeance:
Sin doth never cease.

In your deep floods
Drown all my faults and fears;
Nor let His eye see Sin,
but through my tears

Phineas Fletcher, 1633

Listen to VOCES8 singing Orlando Gibbons’ setting of the Passiontide hymn ‘Drop, Drop, Slow Tears’

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