Worship for Maundy Thursday
Published by Jon Cooper on Wednesday, 8 April 2020 18:00
This is a form of prayer you might find helpful to use on the evening of Maundy Thursday. Know that others, in their own homes, will be joining with you. If a household are praying together one person may act as leader and the others join in the sections in bold type. If alone, read all the black words aloud. The bits in red type are to help guide you.
Before you begin you may wish to light a candle, make sure you are sitting comfortably and take a few deep breaths to still yourself.
The Lord is here.
His Spirit is with us.
Almighty God, to whom all hearts are open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hidden: cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy name; through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Prayers of Penitence
Take a moment to reflect on your life and our need of God's compassion and mercy.
Most merciful God, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we confess that we have sinned in thought, word and deed. We have not loved you with our whole heart. We have not loved our neighbours as ourselves. In your mercy forgive what we have been, help us to amend what we are, and direct what we shall be; that we may do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with you, our God. Amen.
May the God of love bring us back to himself, forgive us our sins, and assure us of his eternal love in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
You may like to pause for a moment and consider if there is one thing in particular that want to pray for or give thanks for today and offer it to God.
God our Father, your Son Jesus Christ was obedient to the end and drank the cup prepared for him: may we who share his table watch with him through the night of suffering and be faithful. Amen.
I love the Lord,
for he has heard the voice of my supplication;
because he inclined his ear to me
on the day I called to him.
How shall I repay the Lord
for all the benefits he has given to me?
I will lift up the cup of salvation
and call upon the name of the Lord.
I will fulfil my vows to the Lord
in the presence of all his people.
Precious in the sight of the Lord
is the death of his faithful servants.
O Lord, I am your servant,
your servant, the child of your handmaid;
you have freed me from my bonds.
I will offer to you a sacrifice of thanksgiving
and call upon the name of the Lord.
I will fulfil my vows to the Lord
in the presence of all his people,
In the courts of the house of the Lord,
in the midst of you, O Jerusalem.
Now before the festival of the Passover, Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart from this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end. The devil had already put it into the heart of Judas son of Simon Iscariot to betray him. And during supper Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God and was going to God, got up from the table, took off his outer robe, and tied a towel around himself. Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel that was tied around him. He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, ‘Lord, are you going to wash my feet?’ Jesus answered, ‘You do not know now what I am doing, but later you will understand.’ Peter said to him, ‘You will never wash my feet.’ Jesus answered, ‘Unless I wash you, you have no share with me.’ Simon Peter said to him, ‘Lord, not my feet only but also my hands and my head!’ Jesus said to him, ‘One who has bathed does not need to wash, except for the feet, but is entirely clean. And you are clean, though not all of you.’ For he knew who was to betray him; for this reason he said, ‘Not all of you are clean.’
After he had washed their feet, had put on his robe, and had returned to the table, he said to them, ‘Do you know what I have done to you? You call me Teacher and Lord—and you are right, for that is what I am. So if I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have set you an example, that you also should do as I have done to you. Very truly, I tell you, servants are not greater than their master, nor are messengers greater than the one who sent them. If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them.
When he had gone out, Jesus said, ‘Now the Son of Man has been glorified, and God has been glorified in him. If God has been glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself and will glorify him at once. Little children, I am with you only a little longer. You will look for me; and as I said to the Jews so now I say to you, “Where I am going, you cannot come.” I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.’
Spend a few minutes re-reading the readings in your head. Pay attention to which words or phrases jump out at you – hold on those words.
Spend a few moments praying for the people you know and love, the needs of the world and for an end to the current Pandemic.
You may like to pray:
Father, on this, the night he was betrayed, your Son Jesus Christ washed his disciples’ feet. We commit ourselves to follow his example of love and service. Lord, hear us and humble us.
On this night, he prayed for his disciples to be one. We pray for the unity of your Church. Lord, hear us and unite us.
On this night, he prayed for those who were to believe through his disciples’ message. We pray for the mission of your Church. Lord, hear us and renew our zeal.
On this night, he commanded his disciples to love, but suffered rejection himself. We pray for the rejected and unloved. Lord, hear us and fill us with your love.
On this night, he reminded his disciples that if the world hated them it hated him first. We pray for those who are persecuted for their faith. Lord, hear us and give us your peace.
On this night, he accepted the cup of death and looked forward to the new wine of the kingdom. We remember those who have died in the peace of Christ. Lord, hear us and welcome all your children into paradise.
The Lord's Prayer
You may like to keep a time of silent prayer, as Jesus prayed this night in the Garden of Gethsemane. When you are finished you can conclude your prayers with the Lord’s Prayer.
When the disciples had sung a hymn they went out to the Mount of Olives. Jesus prayed to the Father, ‘If it is possible, take this cup of suffering from me.’ He said to his disciples, ‘How is it that you were not able to keep watch with me for one hour? The hour has come for the Son of Man to be handed over to the power of sinners.’
Christ was obedient unto death.
Our commemoration of the Triduum, the three-days of Jesus’ death and resurrection, continue tomorrow – Good Friday.