This article is from Issue 54 of “On The Move,” a publication of new learning possibilities for churches, at one time published by The Joint Board of Christian Education of Australia and New Zealand.
Although some ideas and liturgies may appear somewhat “dated” in style, concept, imagery or language, they may nevertheless offer a spring-board for new ideas among people who find themselves leading worship, perhaps in a new context, and with some trepidation.
Reproduced by permission. May be reprinted for use in local congregations only.
Maundy Thursday Communion Service
Takapuna Methodist Church, Aukland, New Zealand
Leader: Jesus said, Where two or three come together in my name, I am with themOn the night befbre he died, Jesus had a meal with his friends. While they were eating, he took bread, gave thanks to God, broke it and said, This is my body which is given for you. Do this in memorv of me. After supper he took the cup and said, This cup is Gods new covenant, sealed with my blood. Whenever you drink it, do it in memory of me.We meet together as friends of Jesus, who has invited us to share this meal. We remember that the Faith has been passed on to us by those in every generation who dared to follow Jesus. We remember too that we belong to a world-wide family of Christians of every kind. Let us greet one another as sisters and brothers in Gods family. May the peace of God be with you.
And Gods peace with you.
Reading: Psalm 96 (Leslie Brandt) or a song of praise.
As we think about Gods greatness. love and goodness to us, we begin to be aware that we do not always behave like members of God s family. Often we have not cared about God or about other people, or about the world we live in. Let us look at ourselves honestly and ask God to forgive us.
even now we do not know how far we have turned away from you.
Bring us back.
Send your Spirit like a strong wind into our lives;
disturb our complacency, expose our faults,
drive out our pride and selfishness.
Help us put right the things we have done wrong.
Make us willing to forgive those who have wronged or hurt us.
Clear away our grudges and bitterness.
Demolish the walls we have built between us.
Freshen our lives with your presence.
Help us to live in love and peace with all people.
Pause for reflection
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us in the time of trial and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours, now and forever. Amen.
God forgives us. Each of us is set free to make a new beginning.
Thanks be to God!
When Jesus took bread and wine, he gave new meaning to commonplace things. In the same way God can use and transform the everyday lives of ordinary people. Let us offer ourselves and our gifts to be part of God’s purposes for the world.
(The people take the Easter bun and the glass of grape juice in their hands.)
Lord, receive these gifts, harvest of the earth and product of human hands. We humbly ask you to accept us with both our strengths and our weaknesses. May all be used to serve and honour you.Almighty God, your love is greater than we can imagine or deserve. You loved us long before we knew or loved you. In the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ you showed that nothing can destroy your love or separate us from it. You welcome us as Jesus welcomed all who came to him: children and old people, the lowly and the powerfull, saints and sinners, strangers and outcasts, the sick and the healthy, those who search for truth.
With all our hearts we thank you, Lord. Help us to recognise your presence and grow in your love. By your Spirit, may this bread and wine unite us with Christ and give us life and wholeness.
Let us now take our Easter bun, break it and remember the broken body of our Lord.
The bread which we break is a sharing in the body of Christ.
(Each person eats a small portion of the bun.)
Let us take our glass of grape juice and remember that the blood of Jesus Christ was shed because he loved us so much.
The cup which we drink is a sharing in the blood of Christ.
(Each person drinks all their grape juice.)
In the communion, God binds us together as members of one family.
Let us remember to care for one another as God cares for us.
Let us remember too our responsibility to care for other people
and for the world which God created.
(Prayers of intercession are contributed by the people.)
Hymn: ‘When I survey the wondrous cross’
Leader: Go into the world in peace, renewed and strengthened by Gods Spirit.
We go to serve in the name of Christ.
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God
and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all. Amen.