Saturday, March 22, 2008

Good Friday... it was indeed.

We had a lovely community Good Friday service. I have to admit that I was the one who prepared the service. I daresay that creativity is not the strong suit of my ministerial colleagues. Maundy Thursday could have been any other communion service I've ever been to. We did the solemn reproaches of the cross out of the Book of Common Worship and darkened the sanctuary and removed the paraments and draped the cross. Then we sang "Were You There When They Crucified My Lord?" with a guitar, entirely in the dark. Then we left in silence. I saw not a few eyes sparkling with tears on the way out. That is when I love my job.
I like Maundy Thursday with the remembrance of the Last Supper and Passover. I've never done a foot washing, and I have to admit that I can't say I want to. I am one of those people who get the willies about other people's feet. I always wear flip-flops in showers at hotels, gyms, etc. Some people find it very humbling. I'd just find it gross. Maybe that makes me a bad person, or at least a bad pastor. But I'm sure it's just one thing in a long list.
But I love Good Friday. I love a tenebrae service, the descending into darkness. I reminded my congregation on Sunday that we simply cannot have a resurrection without a death. To skip from Palm Sunday to Easter is doing a great disservice to the one who suffered and died for us. We have to take the time to remember the bad in order to appreciate the great good. To me, it is one of the most meaningful services of the year. We need to be a little uncomfortable in church sometimes, probably more than we are most times.
Have a blessed Easter everyone.

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