Friday, March 30, 2007

Holy Week Friday Five

Friday Five: Holy Week, Batman! for Rev Gal Blog Pals Friday 5

According to ReverendMother:
Well, the Clergy Superbowl is almost upon us, and so, I offer up this Friday Five (with apologies for the irreverent title):
1. Will this Sunday be Palms only, Passion only, or hyphenated?

Palms Alone!

2. Maundy Thursday Footwashing: Discuss.

It so strikes me that protestants have retained but two "dominical(?!)" sacraments, purportedly chosen because of Jesus' direct command plus the manner in which Baptism and the Lord's Supper make use of earthly means. I know so little about this, but I *think* some Mennonites as well as Church of the Brethren and Church of God in Christ consider foot washing a sacrament or possibly regularly practice it in tandem with HC? (Hey, folks—people seem to consider me somewhat expert on liturgy...I even received the title "Liturgy Queen"...but my experience remains in the mainline...} at the church I currently attend most frequently, Maundy Thursday 2006 was the first time they didn't wash feet; all the other years, anyone could come forward to the chancel to be washed and then to wash.

However, at a previous church, a handful of people I knew were big $$$$ contributers got hand-picked to be the symbolic wash-ees—something that still sticks in my craw! We know foot-washing was the work of the lowliest, none lower servant; we recognize Jesus' washing the feet of his followers as the ultimate example of servanthood and as such, it's a practice that at least on occasion all of us need to observe and probably to experience.

3. Share a particularly meaningful Good Friday worship experience.

A few years ago at one of the ELCAs, we received two small pieces of paper before entering the sanctuary (I think I was there mainly for the choir cantata or concert). At the designated time, we got to write something we wanted to nail to the cross on each paper scrap, and then went forward, received a couple of framing nails and got to nail our stuff to a big ole rugged wood cross that was stretched out in front of the chancel. That's a big church, and there was a mob of people that evening, so the total intensity has stayed with me.

4. Easter Sunrise Services—choose one:

this one: a) "Resurrection tradition par excellence!"

b) "Eh. As long as it's sunrise with coffee, I can live with it."
c) "[Yawn] Can't Jesus stay in the tomb just five more minutes, Mom?!?"

5. Complete this sentence: It just isn't Easter without...

Easter Vigil!

Bonus: Any Easter Vigil aficionados out there? Please share.

I'll spring for this one: my best Easter memories are two about the Easter Vigil—the year I read the Easter Proclamation – "This is the night that shines as the day!" – and the year I kindled the New Fire!


  1. I so love the lighting of the new fire.

    And you're right about footwashing being rather sacramental. Honestly I think the main reason it isn't is because of the squick factor.

  2. hmmm I understand your point about foot-washing- it looses its power if only the " wealthy" are chosen for the honour!
    Great play thanks

  3. I could go with footwashing as a sacrament...but certainly for me it is sacramental...and I love the lighting of the new fire, it always scared me a bit, 'cuz I build a BIG one inside the church (in a table top grill). The flames leap up about two feet above my head...and everyone gasps. Then it settels down and we can go on with the service.

    Thanks for sharing.

  4. You got to kindle the fire and proclaim the night! How very awesome and as a sister vigil lover/ministry opportunity seeker I can imagine what a joy those times must have been.

    May this year's Holy Week and specially Vigil be radiant with God's love for you.

  5. Oh, and I haven't experienced this myself, but a friend went with a Brethren friend to their quarterly footwashing (in tandem with a sweet bread of some sort I think but not communion) and said it was very moving. I do wonder why when Jesus told us to break the bread and wash the feet we do the former weekly (or, for some, daily) and the latter yearly (or, for some, never). And I never get what is so icky about feet to some folks...though maybe that's cause I love to get and give foot massages.


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