Maundy Thursday Worship

Opening Prayer

Gracious God, we give you thanks this night for the privilege of gathering together to remember, to celebrate, and to share.  We give you thanks for the journey we have been on with you—from manger to Temple, from Egypt to Galilee, from darkness to light.  Tonight we feast, as you did on a night like this so long ago, remembering your promises, your mighty deeds, your rescue of your people, your saving grace.  As we share this meal tonight, make us mindful of those who are hungry.  As we celebrate together, make us mindful of those who sorrow and those who are alone.  As we remember once again all you have done and all that you are, form us once again into your people.

May all who hunger come to rejoice in the feast of your kingdom.  Let all the human family sit at your table, drink the wine of deliverance, and eat the bread of freedom.  We pray these things in Jesus’ name.  Amen.

Preparation for Christ in the Passover

On Thursday, April 9, our church and many Christians around the world will commemorate the night before Jesus’ crucifixion, the night when he shared an intimate meal with his disciples.  This holy day is called Maundy Thursday which finds its root in the Latin “mandatum” which means “command.”  It points to the night when Jesus washed his disciples’ feet and then shared that they should wash one another’s feet followed by saying, “So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other.” (John 13:34 NLT).  That intimate meal was the Jewish Passover.

In this season of “shelter in place,” our once planned Christ in the Passover presentation in the fellowship hall, will now be brought right into your home.  While I lament that we can’t gather and share in this experience together, moving this meal into our homes is quite appropriate – Passover was always a meal that was and is shared and remembered in the Jewish home.  So at 6:00 pm, join us for a Christ in the Passover celebration via our website. 

To make the service even more memorable, you are invited to gather the following elements to make your own Seder plate. . . .

Here is the Jews for Jesus setup.  You won’t need to set up a table but simple gather the ingredients that the presenter would have used.

In addition, you might want to look for Matzah (unleavened bread) and grape juice.  (Saltine crackers are similar if you can’t find Matzah.)  You will want to use the bread to help you eat some of the items on the Seder plate.  At the close of the presentation, read the story of the Last Supper in Luke 22:7-38, have a brief moment of prayer then share the bread and the cup.

Here is what a traditional Jewish Seder plate looks like.  You won’t need one, but it will help you understand the meal.

If you would like to make authentic charoset (rather than just cup of apples), here’s the recipe Pastor Stan used last year.

Preparing and then sharing this meal can be a truly formative experience for children and adults.  The intimacy of sharing this meal in your home could be a life-altering experience, perhaps a new family tradition.  My prayer is that you are transported back to that Jewish table where Jesus shared intimately with his disciples.  This is Jesus command – Love one another.  May we remember Jesus and one another as we break bread in our homes.  Please join us.