Community UMC, 20 Center St, Naperville, IL 60540

Welcoming All People and Creating Positive Change


Sun - Fri Mar 24 - 29 2024


All Day

Holy Week at Community UMC

Palm Sunday

Sunday, March 24 | 9am & 11am | Sanctuary

The Kingdom of God is full of surprises and we should be willing to receive it as such. We see this truth clearly in the traditional Palm Sunday gospel narrative where Jesus shows up in an unexpected way in the final week of his earthly life. We must be willing to receive his Kingdom in surprising ways and open to the various ways he may be at work in our lives. Today, we explore how the Kingdom of God is full of amazing surprises and adventures. As we journey this walk with Jesus, we will be encouraged to step out in faith as we apply the spiritual practices of worship & prayer, studying, service, giving, and sharing. 

As we reread the story from Matthew 21, every part of the story was familiar — the disciples being sent into the city to find a donkey, the instructions Jesus gave about where to find one, the way to borrow it, the way Jesus mounted the animal, the cloaks of his disciples covering the animal, the people throwing their garments on the road, the waving palm branches, the shouts from the pilgrims along the way. Jesus arrives at Jerusalem, and the people ask the question, “Who is this?”

We know that that question is in front of us. We have read it many times. But now those questioning words have taken on a new importance. That question is much more than a question from the past. It is a contemporary question. It is our question.

As joyful as we may be as we enter into the Palm Sunday celebrations, there is deep within us a lingering question, “Who is this who comes?” There are factual answers, theoretical answers, and personal answers that we will explore.

Maundy Thursday

Thursday, March 28 | 7pm | Sanctuary

You are invited to a multi-sensory worship experience on Maundy Thursday, March 28, 7pm, in the Sanctuary, to remember the final hours of Jesus’ life and his death.

It is the tradition of the Church during the week between Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday to remember Jesus’ sacrifice in crucifixion. This year at Community UMC we remember this dark time with a Tenebrae Service. “Tenebrae” is the Latin word meaning “darkness.” In the sanctuary we will recall Jesus’ final hours with the observance of Holy Communion (in the Methodist tradition, everyone is welcome to participate), and the biblical story of Jesus’ last hours. As we tell the story we will extinguish candles, darken the sanctuary, and drape the platform in black… all symbols of the human death Jesus suffered. Worship concludes in total darkness and with a loud sound (called strepitus in Latin) to represent the closing of Jesus’ tomb – and convey the sense of the total loss of God’s presence and the effect of the death of Jesus on all of creation. Worshipers are invited to then leave in silence to ponder the impact of Christ’s death and await the celebration of the coming Resurrection.

Good Friday

Friday, March 29 | 7pm | Wesley UMC

Joint service with Community UMC, First Congregational UCC & Wesley UMC

Community UMC, 20 Center St, Naperville, IL 60540