Tenebrae: A Liturgy of Darkness

Event details

  • April 5, 2023
  • 7:30 PM
Please join us for a service of Tenebrae, a contemplative monastic service of darkness.
Tenebrae is the Latin word for darkness. This service is a meditation on the events in our Lord’s life between the Last Supper and the Resurrection. The service begins in lament, with portions of the Lamentations of Jeremiah, and continues with readings from St. Augustine and from modern martyrs, interspersed with chants from the psalms, sung by the choir. As the service progresses, lights are gradually extinguished until only a single candle remains. Towards the end of the service this candle is hidden, symbolising the apparent victory of the forces of evil.  At the very end  there is a tremendous noise representing the earthquake that followed Christ’s death. Finally, the hidden candle is brought back and the congregation leaves in silence.
In difficult times, this service provides a particularly poignant space in which to mourn and hope and pray.
Since the church will be darkened throughout the service, there will be no visual component to the livestream; however, the audio will be livestreamed at montrealcathedral.ca/live.