a community creating for the relentless return of Sunday

Looking Ahead: Holy Week

One week it’s a special evening service. The next week it’s planning for the next special evening service… But sometimes these things take time to put together–maybe you have a dinner on Maundy Thursday? special music or art on Thursday or Good Friday? Footwashing? Dramatic interpretation of the story? Prayer stations? preaching?

So…what services do you have during Holy Week? What kind of atmosphere do you hope to create for those services? What ritual actions (if any) do you practice?

Are there images or words that can be the spark that gets our creativity flowing? What seed-words might you have that we can play off of to create new liturgy for these ancient holy days?

Leave your ideas–whether it’s a word, a phrase, an image, an idea, a song, an action, whatever!–in the comments so we can create together!

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  1. In addition to our regular Maundy Thursday (potluck dinner and communion) and Good Friday (simple evening prayer) services, we are planning a public reading of Mark’s gospel with two other local congregations, inspired by http://www.pcusa.org/resource/read-gospel-mark/. This event will also include dinner and a very limited liturgy – if we do anything new beyond what is in the PCUSA resource, I’ll post it here.

    For the other two regular services, I’m very much open to doing something different. I’m kinda tired of both of them – we’ve done Taizé at both of them several times, and we’ve tried just keeping things very simple. I’m leaning toward the latter again for sure. Any other ideas are appreciated and welcomed!

  2. I’m not really sure. We broke the tradition of following the RCL and have gone for the non-violent atonement approach, asking essentially, “Really? You really believe that?” But, when it comes to Holy Week, I’m not sure how to tell the story in a way that allows for both grief and space to reflect about the violence in our world. It’s tough.

  3. Teri Peterson says

    This year, in an attempt to think about a couple different aspects of God (present in all kinds of places where we forget to look and giver-of-abundance) we are having a party on Maundy Thursday. The dinner will be party food–pizza, finger foods, chips and dip, etc. There will be music in the background, and maybe even party decorations. That will transition with something I’ll say about abundance and feasting and celebrating God’s presence into, I think, stations. I’m not sure what the stations will be yet. Then we’ll be all together for communion, framed by something about an abundance of love…

    Good Friday is harder. I really can’t decide what to do with that this year. I try to stay away from blood, violence, and substitutionary atonement, but I also think it’s important to read the story this one day a year. We’ve had some really powerful Good Friday services the past few years, but this year I’m not sure the best way to approach it. I’d love some thoughts!

    Andy, what other two services do you have besides MT and GF?

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