Thursday, April 14, 2022

LOVELY LANE

UNITED METHODIST CHURCH

MAUNDY THURSDAY

APRIL 14, 2022

7:00PM

 

Gathering Words (Leader)

Tonight is a night of celebration. We are an extended family gathered around a table, celebrating the way in which God is and has been, experienced among us.
Our tradition also reminds us, on the night before he died, Jesus and his friends gathered in an upper room for the meal…Some claim it was a Passover Meal. All agree it was a significant and deeply familiar time.
Tonight we too remember, as we hear the great story of Passover. We remember the stories from Jesus’ ministry and from the week we call Holy.

 

Call To Worship

L: This is a day to remember.

P: We remember the Passover Jesus shared with his disciples.

L: We remember his new covenant of broken bread and cup.

P: We remember his night alone in the garden in prayer.

L: We remember his arrest, his trial, his suffering, the denial of his friend.

P: We remember this day and thank God for Jesus’ presence with us then and now.

 

Old Testament Lesson Exodus 12:1-8, 11-14 NIV     The Passover and the Festival of Unleavened Bread

12 The Lord said to Moses and Aaron in Egypt, 2 “This month is to be for you the first month, the first month of your year. 3 Tell the whole community of Israel that on the tenth day of this month each man is to take a lamb for his family, one for each household. 4 If any household is too small for a whole lamb, they must share one with their nearest neighbor, having taken into account the number of people there are. You are to determine the amount of lamb needed in accordance with what each person will eat. 5 The animals you choose must be year-old males without defect, and you may take them from the sheep or the goats. 6 Take care of them until the fourteenth day of the month, when all the members of the community of Israel must slaughter them at twilight. 7 Then they are to take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of the houses where they eat the lambs. 8 That same night they are to eat the meat roasted over the fire, along with bitter herbs, and bread made without yeast. 11 This is how you are to eat it: with your cloak tucked into your belt, your sandals on your feet and your staff in your hand. Eat it in haste; it is the Lord’s Passover. 12 “On that same night I will pass through Egypt and strike down every firstborn of both people and animals, and I will bring judgment on all the gods of Egypt. I am the Lord. 13 The blood will be a sign for you on the houses where you are, and when I see the blood, I will pass over you. No destructive plague will touch you when I strike Egypt. 14 “This is a day you are to commemorate; for the generations to come you shall celebrate it as a festival to the Lord—a lasting ordinance.

The Word of God….Thanks Be To God

 

Unison Prayer (All)

On this day, O God, you link us with sisters and brothers who celebrate the Passover, even as we remember an upper-room gathering that began a new observance. We thank you that on the night of his betrayal, Jesus took a loaf of bread, and when he had given thanks, broke it and said, “This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” Similarly, he declared a new covenant in his blood and directed us to drink, remembering his death. Take us back to that room that we may know Christ’s presence and be transformed in this hour. Amen.

 

Gospel Lesson John 13:1-15, 31-35 NIV

1 It was just before the Passover Festival. Jesus knew that the hour had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end. 2 The evening meal was in progress, and the devil had already prompted Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot, to betray Jesus. 3 Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; 4 so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. 5 After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him. 6 He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?” 7 Jesus replied, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.” 8 “No,” said Peter, “you shall never wash my feet.” Jesus answered, “Unless I wash you, you have no part with me.” 9 “Then, Lord,” Simon Peter replied, “not just my feet but my hands and my head as well!” 10 Jesus answered, “Those who have had a bath need only to wash their feet; their whole body is clean. And you are clean, though not every one of you.” 11 For he knew who was going to betray him, and that was why he said not every one was clean. 12 When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. 13 “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. 14 Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. 15 I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.

31 When he was gone, Jesus said, “Now the Son of Man is glorified and God is glorified in him. 32 If God is glorified in him, God will glorify the Son in himself, and will glorify him at once. 33 “My children, I will be with you only a little longer. You will look for me, and just as I told the Jews, so I tell you now: Where I am going, you cannot come. 34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

The Word of God for the People of God…..Thanks Be To God

 

Hand Washing

Jesus spent his life teaching us the meaning of love. Through word and deed Jesus showed us how to love God and to love one another.  He fed the hungry.  He healed the sick.  He invited the women and the children and the tax collectors and the sinners to come to his table. He broke bread with the least and the lost and shared the cup of redemption with them all.

He crossed boundaries of race, nationality, ethnicity, gender, and class.  He challenged religious authority, and he scoffed at pomposity and self-absorbed grandeur.  He called out the hypocrites.  He admonished the scribes and the Pharisees for their hardened hearts.  He brought a simple message: Love God, love yourself, and love one another.

All: We gather in the name of Jesus and remember the way that he showed us.  We gather to remember not just his death, but his life.

The way of Jesus goes through the cross, but we are not there yet.  It is close.  We can see its shadow.  We can feel the cold, dark, night. We know that the enemies of God are conspiring.  They have had enough of him.  He threatens their comfort.  He threatens their way of life.  He threatens their power.  They will come for him.  First though, we will gather.  We gather with Jesus and his closest friends.  We gather with those that called him teacher, Rabbi, friend.  We gather for the Passover meal, to remember that God saved the people from slavery.  God saved once.  God saves forevermore.

All: God saved the Israelites at Passover, and revealed that it is God who reigns, not the Pharaoh.  Our God saved once.  God saves forevermore.

Even as they were sharing this sacred meal together, the disciples were not of one heart.  Jesus knew that he was asking much from these men, and he knew that they would fail him.  Judas had already agreed to betray Jesus to the religious authorities.  Was he angry at some slight?  Was he disappointed that Jesus would not raise an army against the Romans? Was he upset with the value of the oil that the woman “wasted” when she anointed Jesus?  We will never know Judas’ heart, but Jesus knew that he would be betrayed.  And what did Jesus do with the man that would betray him?  He broke bread with him. All of the disciples were deeply saddened, and they asked:

All: I would never betray you, Lord.  It’s not me, is it?

Rev. Deb: On the night when Jesus was betrayed, He gathered with his disciples in the upper room, Where an ordinary meal became an instrument of God.

At this table, Jesus broke bread those who would betray him.

At this table, Jesus drank wine with the one who denied him.

At this table, Jesus communed with those who would abandon him.

At this table, Jesus gave a new commandment

At this table, we learn to love one another as God loves us.

At this table we sit at the table of God.

When the supper was over he took the cup, gave thanks to God, gave it to his disciples and said, “Drink from this all of you, this is my blood of the new covenant which is poured out for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins.  Do this, as often as you drink of it, in remembrance of me.”

And so, in remembrance of these your mighty acts in Jesus Christ we offer ourselves in praise and thanksgiving as a holy and living sacrifice, in union with Christ’s offering for us, as we proclaim the mystery of faith.

All: Christ has died. Christ is risen.  Christ will come again.

Rev. Deb: Pour out your Holy Spirit on us gathered here, and on these gifts of bread and the cup.  Make them be for us the body and blood of Christ, that we may be for the world the body of Christ, redeemed by Christ’s blood.  By your Holy Spirit make us one with Christ, one with each other, and one in ministry to all the world, until Christ comes in final victory and we feast at his heavenly banquet.  Through your Son Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit in your holy Church, all honor and glory is yours, almighty Father now and forever.

 

Invitation to Communion

We are gathered as disciples, and tonight Jesus reveals himself to us. He is the master teacher who unexpectedly washes our feet, as would a servant. He has led us triumphantly into Jerusalem, and yet he speaks of going where we cannot go, of being broken and poured out for us. We remember him now as he asked us to do, in a communal meal. Whether bewildered that he must depart, sobered before the cross that awaits, or quietly anticipating Sunday’s joy, let us center ourselves now—in this moment, connected with those around us—to seek God’s presence in the breaking of the bread.

 

Sharing Bread and Cup

When the holy meal had been shared, the disciples began to argue over which one would be the greatest.  Even here, at the end of their time together, they did not seem to understand what Jesus had been teaching them all along.  He reminded them that to be great in the Kingdom of God meant to serve.  After Jesus’ talk of betrayal, the disciples’ argument, and Jesus’ rebuke of them, the disciples seemed to be growing anxious. Peter proclaimed:

All: “Lord, I am ready to go with you to prison and to death.”

And Jesus replied, “I tell you, Peter, the cock will not crow this day until you have denied three times that you know me.”

Silent Prayer

Afterwards, Jesus led his disciples to the Garden of Gethsemane.  He asked them to pray for him, for he wanted to be alone.  There, Jesus prayed.  He asked his friends to keep watch, but they kept falling asleep.  He prayed for another way out.  He prayed in anguish.  He prayed as a man who could feel pain, who would be hurt by betrayal, who would be scarred by the scourge, and would bleed when nails were driven into his arms and legs.  He prayed as a man who knew that if he followed God’s will, he would be charged, convicted, mocked, humiliated, abandoned, and nailed to a cross.  Knowing all of this full well he prayed, “Not my will, but yours.”  Then he stood up for all that he had lived for.  When he got up from prayer, he came to the disciples and found them sleeping, “Why are you sleeping? Get up and pray that you may not come to into the time of trial”

All: Judas said to Jesus, “Rabbi” and kissed him.  Then they came and grabbed Jesus and arrested him.

 

Call to Confession (Leader)

Let us confess before God our tendency, like the Jerusalem crowds, to profess our faith in moments of enthusiasm and deny our faith in moments of stress.

 

Prayer of Confession (All)

Just as the followers of Jesus met with him in that first upper room filled with perplexity and fear, so we confess our own uncertainty, our own timidity as disciples. We would prefer to leave this holy table clear in mind and resolute in spirit. But we know that we will leave with fear and betrayal in our hearts. Yet you are a forgiving and merciful God. You want us to be fed at this table, to be strengthened, to be ready for what may come as we seek to serve you. So forgive us and renew us, we pray, in the name and for the sake of Jesus Christ. Amen.

 

Words of Assurance (Leader)

In our striving to follow Christ, God is a sure and constant presence, never coercing commitment but always inviting it. Amen.

 

Benediction

Now, may the love of God go with us. May God’s face shine upon us. May we carry God’s love into the world, loving one another as God has loved us. May our lives bear witness to the never-ending love of God. Amen.

 

 

Good Friday Service by Zoom at noon – https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86503669896?pwd=cHpIMEl6SjNRN3RnNFB4cEFhMkhCZz09

Easter Worship Sunday in the Sanctuary at 10:15 A.M.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories Uncategorized | Tags: | Posted on April 14, 2022

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