Parish of St Mary the Virgin

Great Shelford


Holy Week 2021

It is good that we are able to offer a mixture of services in church, together with services by Zoom link this Holy Week. A year ago we were not able to offer anything in church as we were constrained by the first lock-down.

What a year it has been! Keeping Holy Week this year has a special poignancy because we have lived through such a painful year. We need to experience that joy of Easter Day, which helps to shed some light on the darker days that are behind us. Our hope is that we shall see better days ahead, strengthened by the message of Easter.

Please do join us, either in church or by Zoom link (this can be obtained by contacting me at ), as we journey towards Easter.

Palm Sunday – 28th March

Holy Week begins. We start our journey towards Easter today by marking Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem. Golden Palm crosses are available, but we are also inviting you to bring along green or flowering shrub branches to carry in the Parish Communion. This is a long tradition in mainland Europe and is in effect our ‘local’ spring palms. Please leave your flowering branches in the cross outside the church as a reminder to visitors of this special day.

In the evening we celebrate Evening Prayer by Zoom link at 4 pm

The Journey of Holy Week

Today sees the start of Holy Week and the days that follow are the most important in the Christian Year as we journey with Jesus through the events of the final few days of his life. The Church has traditionally marked the week with special services and this year we shall be keeping them partly in church and partly by Zoom link. I invite you to come and journey with Christ during this Holy Week of 2021.

A few notes for the week ahead:

Daily prayer – Morning Prayer is held Monday-Wednesday at 9.30am and Evening Prayer Monday-Thursday at 4pm.

Monday – 29th March

At the end of the day, a reflective Compline service by Zoom link at 9pm.

Tuesday – 30th March

Stations of the Cross at 7.30pm, by Zoom link. A meditation of the last hours of Jesus’ life, using images and readings from the Gospel accounts of the Passion.

Wednesday – 31st March

At the end of the day, a reflective Compline service by Zoom link at 9pm.

Maundy Thursday – 1st April

The Holy Oils used in anointing the sick and at Baptism & Confirmation are blessed today at a Eucharist at the Cathedral at 10.30am. At this service, by Zoom link this year, clergy also reaffirm their commitment to the vows taken at ordination.

After the evening Parish Communion of the Lord’s Supper at 7.30pm, at which we remember the Last Supper, the altar is stripped and coverings removed to remind us of the time that Jesus spent in the garden on the night of his arrest. The Watch of quiet prayer will also be observed in our homes this year, ending with Compline at 9pm. by Zoom link.

Good Friday – 2ndApril

The Liturgy for Good Friday, including the reading of the St John Passion and proclamation of the cross is held in church at 2pm.

Holy Saturday – 3rd April

The Easter Vigil starts at 8pm. There will be a service of light, first proclamation of Easter, renewal of Baptismal vows and a Eucharist. A great opportunity to experience the joy of the first Easter service, as night falls.

Easter Day – 4th April

At St Mary’s we begin with a celebration of Holy Communion (BCP) at 8am; a traditional language service, with a short sermon. The 10am Parish Communion is our main service for the day. The day concludes with Evensong at 4pm.

Do please come along and celebrate the most important day in the year.

Simon Talbott


Holy Week service times

Palm Sunday 28th March:

8.00 a.m. Holy Communion (BCP 1662)

10.00 a.m. Parish Communion (Main Sunday service) with

procession & blessing of Palms

4.00 p.m. Evening Prayer by Zoom link


Daily:             9.30 a.m. Morning Prayer (Mon. – Wed.)

4.00 p.m. Evening Prayer (Mon. – Thurs.)

Monday in Holy Week: 9.00 p.m. Compline by Zoom link

Tuesday in Holy Week:

7.30 p.m. Stations of the Cross (meditation on Jesus’ last                                        hours) by Zoom link

Wednesday in Holy Week: 9.00 p.m. Compline by Zoom link

Maundy Thursday:

7.30 p.m. Eucharist of Maundy Thursday, followed by                                              Watch of prayer, and Compline at 9.00 p.m. by                                                                        Zoom link

Good Friday:

2.00 p.m. Liturgy of the Passion (marking Jesus’ last                                                           hour and death)

Easter Saturday:

8.00 p.m. Easter Vigil Eucharist with service of light


Easter Day 4th April:

8.00 a.m. Holy Communion (BCP 1662)

10.00 a.m. Parish Communion (Main Sunday service)

4.00 p.m. Evensong (BCP 1662)