Last updateFri, 29 Apr 2016 3pm

Needy moms focus of church’s Mothers Day celebration

On Sunday, May 10, besides special food and activities to honor moms, parishioners of St. Mark’s Anglican/Episcopal Church in Guadalajara will also wrap up layettes that they are assembling for new mothers who deliver babies at clinics in tiny communities west of Chapala, such as San Juan Cosala and Jocotepec.

English-speaking congregations plan Holy Week, Easter services

St. Mark’s Anglican

St. Mark’s Anglican church begins the holy season on Palm Sunday, March 29, with a bilingual Mass. Parishioners first gather in the garden at noon for a ceremonial palm procession with hymns led by the choir. During Mass, parishioners will put on a reading of the Passion of Christ and the choir will sing Bach’s chorale “O Sacred Head Sore Wounded” among other pieces. Later, a bake sale to support the choir’s plans for Easter will be held.

On April 2, Holy Thursday will be celebrated with a 6 p.m. bilingual service to conclude with the stripping of the altar. The choir will sing the Afro-American spiritual “Were You There When They Crucified my Lord?” and Bach’s “O Sacred Head Sore Wounded.”

On April 3, Good Friday will be commemorated with a service in Spanish beginning at noon.

On Easter Sunday, April 5, St. Mark’s celebrates with an English Mass at 10:30 a.m. (Daylight Saving Time begins on April 5.) St. Mark’s 12-member choir and invited singers, directed by Debra Rodriguez, will sing traditional Easter music, including Vivaldi’s “Gloria” and Bach’s arrangement of “Christ Jesus Lay in Death’s Strong Bands” (lyrics by Martin Luther). Finally, the choir will roar out with Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus” from “The Messiah.” Organ accompaniment by the acclaimed Ana Silvia Guerrero. 

An Easter Bonnet Parade and contest and an Easter egg hunt follow in the garden after Mass. All are invited.

St. Mark’s is a two-minute drive north of Plaza Mexico, at Aztecas and Chichimecas in Colonia Monraz, near end of bus route 33-A. More information: Rev. Dr. James Priddy, (33) 3817-4511. www.stmarksanglican.org

English Fellowship

English Fellowship of Guadalajara (an offshoot of Rey de Reyes Presbyterian church) plans Palm Sunday worship (March 29) at their regular time and location, 6 p.m. at address below. 

A special worship service on Good Friday, April 3, will be at 9 a.m. in the morning at Parque Metropolitano at the red towers in the center of the park, near parking lots. The program consists of singing, prayer and teaching on Jesus’s seven sayings from the cross and, afterwards, a continental breakfast.

Easter Sunday worship is planned for the usual location at 6 p.m. Sunday, April 5 with a potluck meal and Lord’s Supper.

Services at English Fellowship feature contemporary music.

Located at Gabriel d’Annunzio 5184 (next door to the Bridge Club of Guadalajara), 1 1/2 blocks NW of Patria and Vallarta, Colonia Jardines Vallarta. englishfellowshipgdl.org

Christ the Redeemer 

On Good Friday, April 3, 7 p.m., the Bugambilias area bilingual congregation Christ the Redeemer Presbyterian church will have a service of reflection on the Seven Sayings of Jesus on the Cross. This service will be in Spanish

On Easter Sunday, April 5, the English group will have its regular English service at 9:30 a.m. followed by a potluck fellowship brunch at 11 a.m. (before the Spanish service at 12 noon). The church has communion every Sunday. 

Callejon del Iris 45 off Cto. De Las Flores N., (33) 3684-5448. 

St. John Crisostomo

This year, the English-speaking Roman Catholic congregation at St. John Crisostomo will hold their regular English Mass on Palm Sunday, 11 a.m., with a reading of the Passion of the Lord and special Lenten songs by the congregation’s beloved a capella choir Cantabile, directed by Jesus Chavez.

On Easter Sunday, April 5, the English Mass will again be at 11 a.m., with Cantabile singing two classical favorites: Mozart’s “Gloria” from the “Coronation Mass” and Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus” from “The Messiah.”

Gran Plaza shopping center is between Vallarta and Lazaro Cardenas near Sears. 

Maunday Thursday’s 7-church ritual

On Thursday, April 2, thousands of Tapatios will go to church seven times for the “Visit to the Seven Churches,” a Roman Catholic tradition dating back to medieval Spain.

In Guadalajara, pilgrims tend to visit seven of the oldest churches in the city center: the metropolitan Cathedral and the churches of San Agustin, Santa Teresa, Nuestra Señora de la Merced, Santa Maria de Gracia, San Francisco and Santa Aranzazu.  Most Catholic churches in the city hold their Maunday Thursday services around 7 p.m.

The seven-church visit commemorates Christ’s departure from the Last Supper and his walk through the Garden of Gethsemane, where he was ultimately betrayed by Judas Iscariot. After taking communion at their starting church, worshippers amble through the streets to their next chosen destination.

Because fasting is customary on Good Friday (the following day), vendors of traditional Easter empanadas (pastries filled with a variety of stuffings) do a brisk trade. In fact, the empanadas are so famous that it is claimed many people take part in the seven-church visit just to sample the different varieties.