Tenebrae (Latin for ‘shadows’ or ‘darkness’) is a Christian religious service celebrated within Western Christianity on the evening before or early morning of Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy Saturday, which are the last three days of Holy Week. The distinctive ceremony of Tenebrae is the gradual extinguishing of candles while a series of readings and psalms is chanted or recited.
We form a circle of chairs. Beforehand about a dozen of us have been allocated a short passage from the bible relating to the events at Easter up until the Good Friday. In due course and after silence each of us reads our allocated passage. There are a number of candles in the centre of the circle. We each extinguish one of the candles, so that at the end of the service the room has become darker. This is a sombre event which attempts to capture some of the gravity of events in the days up to and including the killing of Jesus on the cross.
The event is open to everyone, both Christians and Non-christians, though it is not quite everybodies thing.