Holy Thursday Visits to Altars of Repose

One neat spiritual tradition about Holy Thursday is the custom of visiting other Churches after the Mass of the Lord’s Supper to pray and reflect on this sacred time from the Last Supper to Good Friday.  Some traditions visit up to seven Churches, but there is always flexibility in matters of custom.

The Seven Churches Visitation is traced back by some to the time of St. Philip Neri in Rome during the 16th Century.  He would initiate groups to visit the basilicas of Rome on Holy Thursday night.  This became a way of keeping watch with Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane the night before his passion and cross.  This tradition continues on in many countries and cities to this day.

I would like to share some of the scripture passages that could be good for meditation on Holy Thursday night.  There are also many other good devotional prayers published in Magnificat, Word Among Us, and other publications for Holy Thursday evening.

  1. Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane (Lk 22:39-46)
  2. Jesus before Annas (Jn 18:19-22)
  3. Jesus before Caiaphas (Mt 26:63-65)
  4. Jesus before Pilate (Jn 18:35-37)
  5. Jesus before Herod (Lk 23:8-9; 11)
  6. Jesus before Pilate again (Mt 27:22-26)
  7. Jesus’s crucifixion and death (Mt 27:27-31)

I also contacted the other Pastors in the area to see where they are setting up their Altars of Repose, and the times they will be open.

  • Holy Spirit
    • East Side of the Social Hall from 8:15pm to midnight
  • Newman Center
    • Newman Center Classroom on the first floor from 8pm to midnight
  • Cathedral
    • Adoration Chapel from 8:15pm to midnight
  • St. Anthony’s
    • North exterior hallway of the Church from 8:00pm to midnight
  • Nativity
    • Daily Mass chapel from 8:30pm to 10:30pm
  • Sts. Anne and Joachim
    • Social Hall from 8:15 pm to 10:00 pm
  • Blessed Sacrament
    • Gathering space from 8:00pm to 11:00pm
  • Holy Cross
    • Daily Mass chapel from 8:00pm to midnight
  • St. Benedict’s
    • Church basement from about 8:00pm to midnight

Blessings on Holy Thursday!

-Fr. Luke Meyer, Pastor