thinking theology

The Community Meal

Maundy Thursday

(This liturgy for Maundy Thursday holds a community supper at its centre.)

Leader: This is the night on which we remember Jesus’ last days with his friends. In that time, Jesus recollected the sacred history of the Jewish people and offered a living reminder of how God would have people of faith behave. In that time, Jesus received anointing for burial, a gift of love and acceptance, by a nameless woman. In that time, Jesus washed his friends’ feet. In that time, Jesus shared a symbolic meal with his friends and gave the mandate for the new community, a mandate of love and all that that requires. In that time, Jesus moved from fear to the power of vulnerability. In that time, Jesus prepared for death so that we might live in hope. Let us remember the gift of Jesus.

All: Merciful God, help us to recognize your will as we journey. May the memory of the gift of Jesus become the power of the risen Christ for us in our lives and in the life of this community. So be it. Amen.

First Reading: John 13:1-15

Leader: Loving God, grant us the grace of servanthood that we may live together with mutual respect, compassion, and a sense of holiness for all life that you have created.

All: Thanks be to God.

Music

Second Reading: Mark 14:3-9

Leader: God of grace and inspiration, may we recognize your holy will in the actions of others and celebrate prophetic insight that leads us to love and peace.

All: Thanks be to God.

Music

Third Reading: Mark 14:12-20

The Meal

Fourth Reading: Mark 14:22-25

Leader: God of community and family, may your gift of celebration in the life of Christ move us tot he work of reconciliation and hope.

All: Thanks be to God.

Music

Fifth Reading: Mark 14:26-50

Leader: God of Mercy, forgive us for the many ways we have betrayed your trust and have not loved the Christ in each other. On this holy night, may we be filled with the power of Christ’s love that is strong enough to banish fear and doubt. Grant us the vision to see beyond death and despair to your promise of resurrection so that we may become the people of your Beloved.

All: Thanks be to God. Amen.

Music

Dismissal (after the meal, before the dishes!)

Leader: Go in hope, bearing the message of love, of service, of community, into the world that God loves.

All: Blessed be God.

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