Maundy Thursday is an observance of intention. The word “maundy” is taken from “maundatum” or “mandate,” where Jesus commands his followers to love one another.
The whole observance is a story in three parts: confession and forgiveness, acts of service, and a meal of love. For an adapted family service around the table, a simple prayer will suffice for confession and forgiveness on this night and will open the observance with sacred empty space. The washing and meal that follow can be done with as much joy or as much solemnity as your family dynamics dictate. Remember that the point of this observance is not to feel anything in particular, but rather to participate in a larger story that these holy days narrate.
It’s also important to note that, while your family meal is certainly sacred, this is not the Sacrament of Holy Communion and not a “Christian Seder.” This is recalling what every Eucharist reminds us: every shared meal is ordinary and extraordinary, and Christ is present in our gathering whenever we dine in fellowship.
April 6, 2023
On Good Friday, Christians commemorate the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his death on the cross, which is considered the ultimate sacrifice for the sins of humanity. It is a solemn day of mourning and reflection on the suffering and death of Jesus. However, Good Friday is also a day of hope, as Christians, we believe that Jesus' death ultimately led to his Resurrection on Easter Sunday and the redemption of humanity.
April 7, 2023
Eighth Sunday After Pentecost
As Solomon prays for wisdom, we seek to more deeply know the treasures of faith. In today’s gospel reading, Jesus offers everyday images that reveal to us the reign of God: a tree that becomes a sheltering home, yeast that penetrates and expands, a treasured pearl, a net that gains a great catch. Even as we seek the riches of God’s reign, the great surprise is that God’s grace finds us first!
July 26, 2020
Seventh Sunday After Pentecost
It is an age-old question: why is there evil in the world? In the parable of the wheat and the weeds Jesus suggests that both grow together until the harvest. With Paul, we long for the day that all creation will be set free from bondage and suffering. Having both weeds and wheat within us, we humbly place our hope in the promises of God, and we go forth with God’s word to bear the fruits of justice and mercy.
July 19, 2020
Sixth Sunday After Pentecost
God’s Word is like the rain that waters the earth and brings forth vegetation. Like the sower who scatters seed indiscriminately, God lavishes the creation with mercy and hope. Even from what appears to be little, dormant, or dead, God brings forth a harvest. God’s Word is the bread of life, from which we are sent to bear fruit in the world.
July 12, 2020
Fifth Sunday After Pentecost
The mystery of God’s ways is sometimes hidden from the wise and intelligent. Jesus associates with those often excluded from the religious community. Like Paul, we struggle with our own selfish desires and seek God’s mercy and forgiveness. We gather to be refreshed by Christ’s invitation: “Come to me, all you that are weary.” Here we find rest for our souls.
July 5, 2020
Fourth Sunday After Pentecost
The welcome of baptism is for all God’s children. This baptismal gift sets us free from the power of sin and death. Christ promises that the disciple who gives a cup of cold water to the little ones serves Christ himself. From worship we are sent on our baptismal mission: to serve the little ones of this world and to be a sign of God’s merciful welcome.
June 28, 2020
Third Sunday After Pentecost
God does not promise that the path of the disciple will be easy. Jeremiah feels the pain of rejection from those who do not want to hear what he has to say. Jesus declares that his words may bring stark division. Even so, we need not be afraid for God accounts for each hair on our heads. Though we may experience rejection, frustration, division, and death, God’s grace and love make us a new creation each day. Marked with the cross and filled with holy food, we are sent from worship to witness to Christ in the world.
June 21, 2020
Second Sunday After Pentecost
Moses tells the Israelites that they are called to be a priestly kingdom and a holy people. Jesus sends out the disciples as laborers into the harvest. In baptism we too are anointed for ministry, sharing God’s compassion with our needy world. Still we go forth to proclaim the good news, to heal the sick, and to share our bread with the hungry.
June 14, 2020
The Holy Trinity
Jesus sends his disciples forth to baptize in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. More than a doctrine, the Trinity expresses the heart of our faith: we have experienced the God of creation made known in Jesus Christ and with us always through the Holy Spirit. We celebrate the mystery of the Holy Trinity in word and sacrament, as we profess the creed, and as we are sent into the world to bear witness to our faith.
June 7, 2020