Celebrate Maundy Thursday on Your Own

Want to be able to celebrate Maundy Thursday but aren’t able to make it to the Maundy Thursday Service on April 13th? Check out these instructions on how to hold a Maundy Thursday service at home with your family.  You can print these instructions by downloading the PDF here.

Maundy Thursday Instructions

The Opening

Welcome to the table

On this night we remember and celebrate the final supper Jesus shared with his disciples in the context of the Passover, when the people of Israel observed their liberation from Egypt. Hear this instruction that God gave to the people of Israel:

Scripture: Exodus 12:1-7, 12-14

Song of praise (played on CD or sung around the table)

Call to Worship

Return to the Lord, God of all mercies, for a feast of love has been prepared for his own.  I will bless the Lord at all times.  His praise shall continually be in my mouth.  O taste and see the goodness of the Lord.  Happy are they who take refuge in God.

Opening Prayer

The Call to Wash – One Another’s Feet

Read either Matthew 25:34-40 or this Reading: He who would be great among you. You whose birth broke all the social & biological rules—son of the poor who accepted the worship due a king—child prodigy debating with the Temple Th.D.s—you were the kind who used a new math to multiply bread, fish, faith. You practiced a radical sociology, rehabilitated con men & call girls. you valued women & other minority groups. a G.P., you specialized in heart transplants.  Creator, healer, shepherd, innovator, story-teller, weather-maker, botanist, alchemist, exorcist, iconoclast, seeker, seer, motive-sifter, you were always beyond, above us-Ahead of your time, & ours.  And we would like to be like you. Bold we hear ourselves
demand: “Admit us to your avant-garde. Grant us degree in all the liberal arts of heaven.” Why our belligerence? Why does this whiff of fame and greatness smell so sweet? Why must we compete to be first? Have we forgotten how you took, simply, cool water and a towel for our feet?

The Footwashing

[The leader of the family wash the feet of the youngest, to start the process and then each one wash someone’s feet as they desire, making sure everyone washes and everyone is washed in the process. They remove their shoes and sit in a place visible to all. Have the towels and a basin ready for this time)

Song – have anyone start a song that would like and sing as the feet are being washed. 

The Meal

Opened with the ancient Jewish table prayer:

Blessed are you, Lord our God, Creator of the Universe. Through your work, all things were made, and by your goodness, we have this food to share. Blessed be God forever. Amen.

Confession and Assurance (after the meal)

The Call to Confession: 1 John 1:9

Prayer

Most holy and merciful Father, we confess to you and to one another, that we have sinned against you by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart and mind and strength. We have not fully loved our neighbors as ourselves. We have not always had in us the mind of Christ. You alone know how often we have grieved you by wasting your gifts, by wandering from your ways, by forgetting your love. Forgive us, we pray you, most merciful Father, and free us from our sin. Renew in us the grace and strength of your Holy Spirit, for the sake of Jesus Christ your Son, our Savior, Amen.

Song of confession (like Just as I am, etc.)

The Word of the Lord     Scripture: Matthew 26:17-30

The Celebration of the Lord’s Supper

[Pass the bread around and the common cup having each person tear off a piece of bread and take a drink from the cup]

Song of thanksgiving

Closing

Prayer

Scripture Readings: Revelation 21:6-7; Jeremiah 31:33; Revelation 21:1-4 – have different people read each verse

Benediction – Head of family prays a prayer of blessing over the family. 

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