On Sunday, April 14, Christians around the world will begin the observance of Holy Week, the final preparation for the celebration of Easter.
Here in the Archdiocese of Newark, the nearly 1.5 million Catholics worshiping in the 212 Catholic parishes in Bergen, Essex, Hudson, and Union Counties will mark the days leading to Easter Sunday with a full range of liturgies—Mass, Stations of the Cross, prayer services and more.
The Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart—the Mother Church of the Archdiocese and seat of the Archbishop—will be the location for several important liturgies, as follows:
Palm Sunday, April 14
Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R., Archbishop of Newark, will celebrate the 10 AM Mass (en español). Mass will also be celebrated at 8:30 AM and 12:30 PM. A Saturday evening Mass on April 13 at 6 PM is also offered. At this Mass, which commemorates the triumphant entrance of Jesus into the city of Jerusalem, worshipers will hear the Gospel story of the Passion and Crucifixion of Jesus. Afterward, they will receive palm fronds.
Chrism Mass, April 15
Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R., Archbishop of Newark, will preside at and be the homilist of the annual Chrism Mass at the Cathedral Basilica. This Mass, which begins at 8 PM, welcomes all those who share in church ministries, including RCIA, Baptism and Confirmation teams, ministers to the sick, and those involved in the hospital apostolate.
The Chrism is a mixture of oil and balsam, or balm, used in diocesan parishes throughout the coming year for the Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, the Anointing of the Sick, and to anoint newly ordained priests and deacons. The Chrism is also used to bless altars and churches.
The Mass, celebrated annually in every diocese of the universal Church, also calls on the several hundred clergy of the Archdiocese present to renew their promises of ordination and for the faithful to witness the blessing of the sacred oils. At the conclusion of the Chrism Mass, representatives from each diocesan parish and institution receive the newly blessed Oil of the Sick, Oil of the Catechumens, and Chrism in the name of their communities.
Holy Thursday, April 18
Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R., Archbishop of Newark, will celebrate the Mass of the Last Supper beginning at 7:30 PM (bilingual) at the Cathedral Basilica. During this Mass, in imitation of Christ’s actions at the Last Supper, the Bishop washes the feet of representatives of the Cathedral parish community.
Good Friday, April 19
Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R., Archbishop of Newark, will celebrate the annual Good Friday Liturgy at 3 PM. This service includes the Veneration of the Cross. Celebration of the Passion of the Lord (en español) will take place at 5 PM.
Holy Saturday, April 20
Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R., Archbishop of Newark, will celebrate the Easter Vigil at 8:30 PM (bilingual). At this liturgy, Catholics will celebrate the festival of light, symbolizing the Light of the Resurrection seen in the new fire, the Easter Candle. New members of the Catholic Church from the Cathedral Basilica parish also will be welcomed into the faith at this Mass.
Easter Sunday, April 21
Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R., Archbishop of Newark, will celebrate Easter Sunday Mass at 12:30 PM. Mass will also be offered at 8:30 AM and 10 AM (en español).