Maundy Thursday service

Opening response

We gather before God
In our need, and bringing with us the needs of the world.
We come to God, who has come to us in Jesus,
and who walks with us the road of our world’s suffering.
We come with our faith and with our doubts:
We come with our homes and with our fears.
We come as we are, because it is God who invites us,
and God has promised never to turn us away.

God our Father, at the end of our Lenten journey we enter into the three holy days of the Lord’s passion, death and resurrection. May we glory in the cross of Christ, for he is our salvation, our life and our resurrection.

Prayer of confession

Our Lord Jesus Christ says: ‘If you love me keep my commandments’.
‘Unless I wash you, you have no part in me’.

Let us confess to almighty God our sins against his love, and ask him to cleanse us.

Have mercy on us, O God in your great goodness;
according to the abundance of your compassion blot out our offences.

Lord have mercy.
Lord have mercy.

Against you only we have sinned and done what is evil in your sight.

Christ have mercy.
Christ have mercy.

Purge us from our sin and we shall be clean,
wash us and we will be whiter than snow.

Lord have mercy.
Lord have mercy.

Pause

May the Father forgive us
by the death of his Son
and strengthen us to live
in the power of the Spirit all our days.
Amen.

Collect

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.

Reading: John 13:1-17, 31b-35

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.’

Intercessions

In the power of the Spirit, let us pray to the Father,
through Christ the saviour of the world.

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 them 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

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.
Lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours
now and for ever.
Amen.

Lament

How lonely sits the city that once was full of people!
How like a widow she has become,
she that was great among the nations!
She weeps bitterly in the night, with tears on her cheeks;
among all her lovers she has no one to comfort her.
Jerusalem, Jerusalem, return to the Lord your God.

The roads to Zion mourn, for no one comes to the festivals;
all her gates are desolate, her priests groan;
her young girls grieve, and her lot is bitter.
Her children have gone away, captives before the foe.
Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by?
Look and see if there is any sorrow like my sorrow.
Jerusalem, Jerusalem, return to the Lord your God.

From on high he sent fire; it went deep into my bones;
he spread a net for my feet; he turned me back;
he has left me stunned, faint all day long.
For these things I weep; my eyes flow with tears;
for a comforter is far from me, one to revive my courage;
my children are desolate, for the enemy has prevailed.
Jerusalem, Jerusalem, return to the Lord your God.

All who pass along the way clap their hands at you;
they hiss and wag their heads at daughter Jerusalem;
‘Is this the city that was called the perfection of beauty,
the joy of all the earth?’
The thought of my affliction and homelessness is wormwood and gall.
Jerusalem, Jerusalem, return to the Lord your God.

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases,
his mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.
‘The Lord is my portion,’ says my soul,
‘therefore I will hope in him.’
The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul that seeks him.
Jerusalem, Jerusalem, return to the Lord your God.

It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.
It is good for one to bear the yoke in youth,
to sit alone in silence when the Lord has imposed it,
to put one’s mouth to the dust (there may yet be hope),
to give one’s cheek to the smiter, and be filled with insults.
For the Lord will not reject for ever.
Jerusalem, Jerusalem, return to the Lord your God.

Gospel of the Watch (Year B: Matthew 26:30-end)

When they had sung the hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.

Then Jesus said to them, ‘You will all become deserters because of me this night; for it is written,
“I will strike the shepherd,
and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.”
But after I am raised up, I will go ahead of you to Galilee.’ Peter said to him, ‘Though all become deserters because of you, I will never desert you.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Truly I tell you, this very night, before the cock crows, you will deny me three times.’ Peter said to him, ‘Even though I must die with you, I will not deny you.’ And so said all the disciples.

Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsemane; and he said to his disciples, ‘Sit here while I go over there and pray.’ He took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be grieved and agitated. Then he said to them, ‘I am deeply grieved, even to death; remain here, and stay awake with me.’ And going a little farther, he threw himself on the ground and prayed, ‘My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; yet not what I want but what you want.’ Then he came to the disciples and found them sleeping; and he said to Peter, ‘So, could you not stay awake with me one hour? Stay awake and pray that you may not come into the time of trial; the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.’ Again he went away for the second time and prayed, ‘My Father, if this cannot pass unless I drink it, your will be done.’ Again he came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were heavy. So leaving them again, he went away and prayed for the third time, saying the same words. Then he came to the disciples and said to them, ‘Are you still sleeping and taking your rest? See, the hour is at hand, and the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. Get up, let us be going. See, my betrayer is at hand.’

While he was still speaking, Judas, one of the twelve, arrived; with him was a large crowd with swords and clubs, from the chief priests and the elders of the people. Now the betrayer had given them a sign, saying, ‘The one I will kiss is the man; arrest him.’ At once he came up to Jesus and said, ‘Greetings, Rabbi!’ and kissed him. Jesus said to him, ‘Friend, do what you are here to do.’ Then they came and laid hands on Jesus and arrested him. Suddenly, one of those with Jesus put his hand on his sword, drew it, and struck the slave of the high priest, cutting off his ear. Then Jesus said to him, ‘Put your sword back into its place; for all who take the sword will perish by the sword. Do you think that I cannot appeal to my Father, and he will at once send me more than twelve legions of angels? But how then would the scriptures be fulfilled, which say it must happen in this way?’ At that hour Jesus said to the crowds, ‘Have you come out with swords and clubs to arrest me as though I were a bandit? Day after day I sat in the temple teaching, and you did not arrest me. But all this has taken place, so that the scriptures of the prophets may be fulfilled.’ Then all the disciples deserted him and fled.

Those who had arrested Jesus took him to Caiaphas the high priest, in whose house the scribes and the elders had gathered. But Peter was following him at a distance, as far as the courtyard of the high priest; and going inside, he sat with the guards in order to see how this would end. Now the chief priests and the whole council were looking for false testimony against Jesus so that they might put him to death, but they found none, though many false witnesses came forward. At last two came forward and said, ‘This fellow said, “I am able to destroy the temple of God and to build it in three days.” ’ The high priest stood up and said, ‘Have you no answer? What is it that they testify against you?’ But Jesus was silent. Then the high priest said to him, ‘I put you under oath before the living God, tell us if you are the Messiah, the Son of God.’ Jesus said to him, ‘You have said so. But I tell you,
From now on you will see the Son of Man
seated at the right hand of Power
and coming on the clouds of heaven.’
Then the high priest tore his clothes and said, ‘He has blasphemed! Why do we still need witnesses? You have now heard his blasphemy. What is your verdict?’ They answered, ‘He deserves death.’ Then they spat in his face and struck him; and some slapped him, saying, ‘Prophesy to us, you Messiah! Who is it that struck you?’

Now Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard. A servant-girl came to him and said, ‘You also were with Jesus the Galilean.’ But he denied it before all of them, saying, ‘I do not know what you are talking about.’ When he went out to the porch, another servant-girl saw him, and she said to the bystanders, ‘This man was with Jesus of Nazareth.’ Again he denied it with an oath, ‘I do not know the man.’ After a little while the bystanders came up and said to Peter, ‘Certainly you are also one of them, for your accent betrays you.’ Then he began to curse, and he swore an oath, ‘I do not know the man!’ At that moment the cock crowed. Then Peter remembered what Jesus had said: ‘Before the cock crows, you will deny me three times.’ And he went out and wept bitterly.