This Holy Week, as people across Scotland celebrate Easter with everything from children’s egg hunts to special church services.
In Hamilton, Lanarkshire, the church will be taking the Easter message into their community with ground-breaking productions of the Passion Play.
The play at Hamilton Old Kirk, which will be performed in public for the first time, began this week with a Palm Sunday procession that attracted hundreds of people.
A cast of more than 30 people from the Hamilton area have been brought together, alongside professional actors in the roles of Judas and Jesus, to create an ambitious performance portraying the events leading up to Jesus’ death and resurrection.
Each year the churches of Hamilton take turns to host events to mark Holy Week. This year it’s up to Hamilton Old Kirk at Leechlee Road, Hamilton, where a husband and wife team have led the project.
Host minister Rev. Ross Blackman is “incredibly excited” about the production, and emphasises what he hopes will be a sensory performance.
On Thursday night, 13 April in Hamilton, the scene of the Last Supper included members of the Hamilton area clergy as disciples, who distributed the communion elements at the end of the service. View the video below of Thursday night’s scene
On Good Friday, 14 April, the service will conclude with Jesus on the cross outside the front of the church before being “buried” in the church for the weekend.
The event will culminate on Easter Sunday, 16 April, with a dawn service of resurrection at 6.30am and followed by scenes from the Resurrection at 10:30am.
The meaning of Easter
Rev Joanne Hood, minister at St John’s Church in Hamilton, is also taking part in the production, which hundreds are expected to attend. She said: “We wanted to do something to help everyone understand the meaning of Easter; of Christ’s resurrection and the joy it gives us. That’s why we will be staging the Passion Play both in the streets of Hamilton and in our churches. It’s a huge thing for us with all the churches coming together across denominations to put on a really special event for the community.”