Tuesday, March 15, 2016

A Good Friday Hour At The Cross Service

Any ideas for this type of service?

Although the cross is inexhaustible it is a challenge to come up with a fresh angle each year.

In the past it seems like I have done:

2015: Little mini talks based on Lee Gatiss' book, The Forgotten Cross

2014: The cross from the perspective of different characters in the passion narrative. (Of course there would be scope for some variety in this / a theme, especially if one looked beyond the accounts of the crucifixion. A friend kindly suggested looking at the women who are featured: the woman who caused Peter to betray Christ, Pilate's wife, Jesus' mother, the other women at the cross and the women at the tomb)

2013: Reflections based on When I Survey The Wondrous Cross

2012: Christ's words from the cross

2011: The cross from some Old Testament passages (e.g. Gen 3, 22; The Passover, Ps 22; Is 53, there are lots of obvious choices, of course)

Matt Searles has written some reflections on the Psalms that were used at Passover time, which likely our Lord sang on Maundy Thursday: http://www.mattsearles.org.uk/easter-meditation-psalm-113/

On approach might be: 'Cross words': justification, redemption, propitiation, atonement, ransom etc.

Models of the atonement (e.g. exemplary, propitiatory, satisfaction, victory).

One could just do some passages from one of the gospels - though Bodle Street & Dallington will have read through one of the gospel accounts of the crucifixion on Palm Sunday. If you don't use them on Palm Sunday, dramatized readings might work well for Good Friday.

The cross in a particular Bible book or author - e.g. Mark excluding the passion narrative.

Texts where Christ "looks forward" to the cross.

It might even be worth reflecting on some depictions of the cross in art?

Is there another hymn I could do? (e.g. O Sacred Head, It Is Finished! The Messiah Dies, My Song Is Love Unknown. The possibilities here are endless really)

Or another book that is worth plagiarizing? Stott, The Cross of Christ. Leon Morris.

Some variation of the traditional Stations of the Cross?

Sometimes we've included a poem or had a piece of music played.

One of the Valley of Vision prayers might be useable as part of the service.

It could be an occasion for a kind of litany.

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