Liturgy at Park Church

What is this?

Park Church observes an ancient annual worship cycle called the Christian Calendar or the Christian Year. The seven elements we use corporately are Lent, Eastertide, Pentecost, Ordinary Time, Advent, Christmastide, and Epiphany. Read more on these elements below.

Why do we do this?

We all organize our days by particular calendars! Days and holidays are handed down intentionally to us in order to shape us and help us remember particular things (Consider the 4th of July, Black Friday, Valentine's Day, rhythms of school years, taxes, etc.). These recurring moments are formational to our affections and lives whether we realize it or not.

We can get so consumed with our world that we even forget its broader reality! Intentionally observing the Christian Year helps us orient our stories around the story of Jesus. This helps us turn from self-focus to Christ-focus.

Observing the Christian Year also helps us connect with those who have gone before us. The Church wasn't suddenly born when it started looking like it does today—it has been around for thousands of years, handing down a beautiful gems of heritage. Perhaps the finest is the Christian Year.

How do we do this?

Ordinary Time

Current Season: Through Saturday, November 26

This season happens twice a year, first between Epiphany and Lent, then between Pentecost and Advent.

Though the days days after Epiphany and Pentecost were anything but “ordinary” in the earthly life of Christ and the in early Church, these periods of time encourage the Church to live by the power of the Spirit in response to the previous seasons and days of that Christian Year. In a sense, what's "ordinary" for a Christian is participation in the extraordinary narrative of the Gospel by the Spirit, even in the normal, mundane course of life. Ordinary Time is also a recognition that we need the Holy Spirit in all of life, even for the simplest tasks.

Advent

Sunday, November 27–Saturday, December 24

Begins the four Sundays before Christmas and ends on Christmas Eve.

Advent means “coming” or “arrival”. It’s a season given to remembering His first advent in a manger and also longing for His return. It’s to be filled with longing, expectation, and hope. Advent voices are John the Baptist & Mary.

Christmastide

Sunday, December 25–Thursday, January 5, 2023

12 days following Christmas,

A season celebrating His birth and incarnation. Note that it’s a season and not just a day! This season should be one of wonder and awe—Jesus is the Light of the world.

Epiphany

Friday, January 6, 2023

Celebrating the beginning of Jesus' public ministry and remembering that His light shines on Gentiles. Attention is given to the Magis (Wise men) as well as Jesus’ baptism and miracles.

Ordinary Time

Saturday, January 7, 2023–Tuesday, February 21, 2023

See description above.

Lent

Wednesday, February 22–Saturday April 8, 2023

40 days before Easter beginning with Ash Wednesday.

This season is one marked by repentance, humility, fasting & self-examination. We remember Jesus in the wilderness fasting and also think on the sins that led Jesus to the cross to die for us. Lent culminates in Holy Week, beginning with Palm Sunday and Jesus' entrance on a donkey into Jerusalem. The final 3 days of Holy Week (Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, & Holy Saturday) are when we remember the Passover meal with His disciples, the suffering in the garden of Gethsemane, His betrayal, arrest, beating, crucifixion and death.

Eastertide

Sunday, April 9–Saturday, May 27, 2023

Easter and the 50 days after.

This season celebrates Christ’s resurrection and its implications! It’s a reminder that death does not have the last word, for Christ has overcome the grave.

Pentecost

Sunday, May 28, 2023

The 50th day of the Eastertide season.

Pentecost remembers the gracious sending of the Holy Spirit to fill and empower the church. It’s also a reminder that the Holy Spirit continues to fill and empower us to be His witnesses!