Holy Week and Easter broadcasts from the Vatican, RTÉ and BBC Radio Ulster

25 Mar, 2024 | Bishops, Church, News, Pope, World

Broadcast schedule of Pope Francis for Holy Week and Easter 2024

Holy Week, which is the culmination of the 40-day Lenten period, is the most solemn period for Christians worldwide, when we celebrate the solemn mysteries of Christ’s passion, death and resurrection.  This year the liturgical celebrations of Pope Francis from Palm Sunday to Easter Sunday will take place in Saint Peter’s Basilica, Rome.

Pope Francis will celebrate all of the Holy Week Rites in Saint Peter’s Square, starting with Palm Sunday Mass and Angelus at 09.00am, 24 March.

On Thursday 28 March at 08.30am, Chrism Mass will be celebrated at Saint Peter’s Basilica.  The following day, Good Friday, Pope Francis will preside over the celebration of the Lord’s Passion at Saint Peter’s Basilica at 16.00pm.  The Way of the Cross from the Colosseum will be celebrated later that evening at 20.15pm in the Saint Peter’s Basilica.

Likewise, the Easter Vigil Mass will also be held in the Saint Peter’s Basilica at 18.30pm on 30 March.  The following day, the Holy Father will celebrate Easter Sunday Mass in Saint Peter’s Square and conclude with the “Urbi et Orbi” message and blessing at 08.00am.  For more information on Pope Francis’s schedule: Worldwide Telecast Easter 2024 (comunicazione.va)

Religious output on RTÉ during Holy Week and Easter 2024

Palm Sunday – 24 March
11.00 to 11.45am The Rev Dr Maithrie White-Dundas will lead a Church of Ireland Service in the RTÉ studios, in Donnybrook, with members of the All Ireland Primate’s Reference Group on Ethnic Diversity, Inclusion & Racial Justice.  Music is by the Discovery Gospel Choir led by Abdul Saidi. (RTÉ One & RTÉ Radio 1 Extra)
14.15-15.00pm Mass for Palm Sunday from The Church of the Annunciation, Rathfarnham, Co Dublin.  Celebrant still TBC (RTÉ News Channel)

Holy Thursday – 28 March
16.40 to 17.35pm Mass of the Lord’s Supper, celebrated by Father Joe Campbell with students and staff of Sacred Heart School, Tullamore, Co Offaly. (RTÉ One. Repeated on RTÉ Radio 1 Extra at 19.00pm)

Good Friday – 29 March
15.00 to 16.00pm Solemn Liturgy for Good Friday from Saint Mary’s Cathedral, Kilkenny.  The Liturgy of the Passion of the Lord is led by Father Dermot Ryan, Adm and concelebrant Father Tom Coyle; music is led by Saint Mary’s Cathedral Choir, directed by Sean O’Neill, the organist is Joy Bibby. (RTÉ One & RTÉ Radio 1 Extra)
15.00-16.00pm Searmanas na Páise:  Searmanas Aoine an Chéasta beo ó Shéipéal Ghobnatan i gCúil Aodha, Co Chorcaigh. (Raidio na Gaeltachta)
16.00 to 16.45pm Canon Paul Willoughby leads Good Friday liturgy in Saint James’ Church of Ireland Church, Durrus, Co Cork (RTÉ News Channel)
19.00-22.00pm Live with Paul Herriott, Paul Herriott brings us Bach’s Saint Matthew Passion live from the stage of the National Concert Hall in Dublin.  This magisterial re-telling of the Easter Story, Bach’s Saint Matthew Passion is arguably the greatest of all musical masterpieces.  Deeply moving, intensely felt and boasting dark-hued music of exquisite beauty, it’s also a drama of tremendous urgency and striking intimacy.  David Young conducts the National Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, with Gavan Ring (Christus), Dan D’Souza (Jesus), Michael Mofidian (Pilate), and soprano Kelli-Ann Masterson, alto Bethany Horak-Hallett, tenor Liam Bonthrone, and Cór na nÓg. (RTÉ Lyric FM)
22.00 to 22.30pm Witness, with Siobhán Garrigan. A special exploration of Easter themes, featuring the Rev Kiran Young Wimberly, a musician and Presbyterian Minister, who lives with her husband and family in the Corrymeela Centre for Peace & Reconciliation, in Co Antrim; Fr Tudor Ghita, a Romanian Orthodox priest in Galway; and a visit by Siobhán to Ballintubber Abbey, Co Mayo, to see the Stations of the Cross created by Imogen Stuart. (RTÉ Radio 1)

Holy Saturday – 30 March
19.00-22.00pm Opera Night with Paul Herriott, The Metropolitan Opera, New York presents Verdi’s Requiem. Yannick Nézet-Séguin conducts tonight’s performance of Verdi’s soul-stirring Requiem, a unique and towering masterpiece that stands as one of the repertory’s great showcases of vocal, choral and orchestral writing. A thrilling quartet of soloists joins the magnificent Met Orchestra and Chorus: soprano Leah Hawkins, mezzo-soprano Karen Cargill, tenor Matthew Polenzani, and bass Dmitry Belosselskiy. (RTÉ Lyric FM)
23.00 to 00.15am Easter Vigil Mass of the Lord’s Resurrection from Saint Mary’s Cathedral, Kilkenny is celebrated by Bishop Niall Coll, Bishop of Ossory, with Father Dermot Ryan, Adm, Father Jim Murphy and Father Tom Coyle concelebrating, alongside members of the Dominican Black Abbey Community and the Capuchin Friary Community.  Music is led by Saint Mary’s Cathedral Choir, directed by Sean O’Neill; the organist is Joy Bibby. (RTÉ One & RTÉ Radio 1 Extra)

Easter Sunday – 31 March
07.00 – 10.00am Vox Nostra, On this Easter Sunday, Vlad Smishkewych explores the origins of the oratorio by way of its Roman roots with Stradella, Carissimi and other Italians.  Vlad also takes in music by the Italian-leaning German composer, Heinrich Schütz, all of whom influenced none other than Handel, when he composed English-language oratorios such as the Messiah. (RTÉ Lyric FM)
10.00 to 11.00am Mass for Easter Sunday,  A Eurovision Mass from the Church of Saint-Remy in Profondeville, in Belgium. The celebrant and preacher is Father Didier Croonenberghs O.P.; Father Paul Yon concelebrates; the choir is directed by Jasmine Daoud accompanied by Philippe Frippiat on the organ. Commentary and translation are by Michael Kelly.
11.00 to 11.45am  Presbyterian Easter Service led by the Rev. William Hayes (RTÉ One & RTÉ Radio 1 Extra)
11.45am to 12.10pm Urbi et Orbi Pope Francis’ Easter Message “to the city and the world” from Saint Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City, with commentary and translation by Michael Kelly. (RTÉ One)
18.00-19.00pm  The Lyric Feature, Chorus Noster Recolat (Our Chorus Recalls)
The Irish World Academy of Music and Dance at the University of Limerick, which celebrates its 30th anniversary this year, is a centre which combines excellence in performance with rigour in academia.  In Chorus Noster Recolat, JJ O’Shea explores Ireland’s earliest notated music, medieval liturgical chant in the company of some of the Academy’s academic staff and their choral group, Cantoral.  The programme, which was made and first broadcast in 2018, includes the final interview with the late Mícheál Ó Súilleabháin who ruminates on this often overlooked area of our musical heritage, its present day revival as it moves from a religious context to the performance stage, and its possibilities for future composition.  He also speculates on the nature of the music of the Irish monasteries in the very early medieval period before the origin of notation and before the standardisation imposed on church liturgy by Charlemagne’s reforms in the ninth century.  Helen Phelan considers the influence of pre-Christian traditions on early church liturgy which found their way into the chant and together with Anne Mannion she looks at the traces of a uniquely Irish approach to hymn writing that draws upon very early Irish poetic forms.  Historian Colmán O Clabaigh gives further context to the material and Limerick based choral group Cantoral perform some of the chant uncovered in the medieval manuscripts.  (RTÉ Lyric FM – A JJ O’Shea production for RTÉ Lyric FM, funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland’s Sound & Vision Fund.)

BBC Radio Ulster’s broadcasting output of liturgies during Holy Week 2024 

Darkness to Dawn, a daily 15 minute programme of Easter reflection

24 March – Angela Ifonlaja
25 March – Reverend Brian Anderson
26 March – Angela Ifonlaja
27 March – Reverend Brian Anderson
28 March – Angela Ifonlaja
29 March – Reverend Brian Anderson
30 March – Angela Ifonlaja and Reverend Brian Anderson

Good Friday – 29 March
08.45am The Reverend David Bruce reflects on the Crucifixion in At the Foot of the Cross

Easter Sunday – 31 March 
08.30 to 10.00am Sunday Sequence with Audrey Carville

10.45am Thought for the Week
11.00am Morning Service Mass from Saint Peter’s Cathedral, Belfast.

On Easter Sunday, from Saint Peter’s Cathedral, Belfast, Bishop Alan McGuckian SJ, Bishop of Down and Connor, will celebrate Mass and Father Martin Graham Adm, will deliver the homily.



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