Tenebrae is a monastic tradition from the 8th Century and uses the extinguishing of candles to represent the fading and fickly loyalty of Jesus’ disciples as he went to and through his passion…and by extension, our fading and fickle loyalty to the crucified Savior as well. It has come back into vogue in the last decade. Unfortunately, most of these services are “insider friendly,” long and involve obscure readings from Lamentations.
We have redone the service in a very powerful way:
1. It traces Jesus’ Passion through Old Testament prophetic passages, material written between 400-1000 years before Jesus was born.
2. It is multi-sensory: It uses both chant and modern music, darkness and light, silence and sound, actors and audience participation.
3. It uses both multi-media & live candles….allowing the room to be actually dark.
4. It is brief: 45 minutes long
If you are from an evangelical tradition, think of it as a Cross-video that plays in your mind – Powerful and brief.
This version, that we wrote, is now being done in 10 places around the country. Last year we did it with PhoenixOne. This year it is led, directed and sung by college and high school students. In the four times we have presented this we have had to ask people to leave more than 30 minutes after the service was finished. It is emotionally powerful and excellent. Come check it out!