Holy Week Ushering Responsibilities

At Saint Katherine, our ushers assist the Parish at the conclusion of each service. Ushers are positioned at the end of each row of pews and direct the parishioners row by row to proceed down the side aisles to receive their antidiron (blessed bread). They make sure the aisles are safe and do not fill up and crowd with too many people.

Saturday of Lazarus

10 AM Divine Liturgy

Followed by Sunday School Confessional retreat.

Palm Sunday Morning

10 AM Divine Liturgy

Standard Sunday morning procedure with larger attendance. Candle monitoring at Narthex. Two offerings taken: 1) Regular tray; and 2) Holy Week Flower tray. Holy Week Flower tray may be passed by Philoptochos members. Sometimes if the flowers are already donated at this point, the Holy Week Flower tray is not passed. No Sunday School. Cut andithron smaller than usual. Six ushers for Communion: 2 at the front of the Soleas, 2 at the sides of the Soleas, and 2 to release the people from the pews. Use all available chairs. Set air conditioning. Two users needed for Palm distribution.

Palm Sunday Evening

7 PM Nymphios (or Bridegroom) Service

Standard ushering. No offering tray is passed.

Holy Monday Evening

7 PM Nymphios (or Bridegroom) Service

Standard ushering. No offering tray is passed.

Holy Tuesday Evening

7 PM Nymphios (or Bridegroom) Service

Standard ushering. No offering tray is passed.

Holy Wednesday Afternoon

5:30 PM Holy Unction Service

Standard ushering. Offering tray is passed at the conclusion of service just before the anointing of the Faithful. Row by row dismissal down the center of the isle.

Holy Thursday Morning

10 AM Divine Liturgy

Standard ushering. No offering tray is passed.

Holy Thursday Evening

7 PM Holy Passion (12 Gospels) Service

Standard ushering. No offering tray is passed. After the sixth Gospel is read, two ushers are needed to help with the placement of the base of the Holy Cross and the flower wreath during the procession around the inside of the Church. A sand box with candles and offering tray to venerate the Holy Cross is setup before the service in the center isle a few rows back from the front. Two ushers should help people up the stairs of the Soleas to venerate the Holy Cross. Stop the Faithful from venerating when Gospel is being read. Two additional ushers should direct people down the center isle to light their candle before venerating the Holy Cross.

Holy Friday Morning

9 AM Decorating the Epitaphios

No ushering required. All are welcome to help decorate.

Holy Friday Afternoon

3 PM Vespers of the Descent from the Cross

Standard ushering. One person need to help remove the body of Christ from the Cross after the Gospel. No offering tray is passed.

Holy Friday Evening

7 PM Lamentations Service

Procession of Epitaphios around the outside of the Church. Large attendance is expected. Cones should be setup to block the main driveway and to mark the storm drain grate in the parking lot near the patio area. Large candles with plastic cups should be available to the Faithful for $5 per candle. This can be setup just outside the front door of the Church in the exo-Narthex area or at the candle stations in the Narthex. Candles should be prepared before the service. Ushers may be needed early to do this. Candles should be ready and ushers ready by 6:30 PM. At least two extra ushers are needed to sell the large candles. Before the service, the center doors should be open to allow parish to venerate Christ at the Epitaphios. The offering trays are passed after the last lamentation is sung by the people. (Page 395 in the Holy Week Book) At the end of the doxology, the procession begins (Page 401).

Six men are needed to carry the Epitaphios canopy with at least two extras to rotate during procession if needed. Another person is needed to carry the large Cross. An additional usher is needed at the front of the procession to monitor pace.

The procession is in the following order:

  1. Usher who is monitoring the pace of the procession
  2. Large wooden Cross bearer
  3. Acolytes (Alter Boys)
  4. Myrrh-bearers (Flower Girls)
  5. Epitaphios Canopy
  6. Priest
  7. Chanters
  8. Choir Members
  9. Congregation

The procession leaves down the center aisle of the Church and travels all the way down to the sidewalk at the street. It then turns left toward the south. The first stop occurs as the Epitaphios Canopy reaches the center of the south side of the Church on the sidewalk. After a brief set of petitions, the procession continues to the parking lot, turns left again and stops at the center of the east wall (Altar) of the Church parking lot. Then a left turn at the driveway to stop at the center of the north wall of the Church. Finally the procession moves down the driveway to the street sidewalk, turns left and continues up the center sidewalk to the front doors of the Church. The last set of petitions are prayed on the large semi-circular patio in front of the Church

Following the last set of petitions, the Epitaphios Canopy is lifted on the shoulders of the men carrying it (alternatively, there are wooden stilts to balance the Epitaphios Canopy on while keeping it at shoulder height), to allow the Faithful to pass under and into the Church. the Epitaphios Canopy is then brought in the Church and replaced on the Soleas.

Ushers are needed to help remove flowers from the canopy and distribute to the Faithful at the end of the service. Take the flowers from the front and top dome last.

Holy Saturday Morning

10 AM Divine Liturgy

Standard ushering. Offering tray is passed following communion.

Holy Saturday Evening

11:45 PM Resurrection Service and Divine Liturgy

Large attendance is expected. Large candles with plastic cups should be available to the Faithful for $5 per candle. This can be setup just outside the front door of the Church in the exo-Narthex area or at the candle stations in the Narthex. Candles should be prepared before the service. Ushers may be needed early to do this. Candles should be ready and ushers ready by 11:15 PM. Offering tray is passed just after the sermon. Ushers should stand at the rear of the Church with trays in hand to serve as a visual reminder to Father Dino to announce the offering. Acolytes will pass the candle light from the Priest to the people. Four ushers at the front of the Church should help keep people seated. General clean up after service.

Easter Sunday Noon

12 Noon Agape Vespers

Standard ushering. No offering tray is passed.