Good Friday Ideas
I closed the Areopogus (a little used forum) a few months back, but I wanted to revive a thread from there. This post from Jen was about her Good Friday Ideas. I hope it helps you.
In our community, the youth from all of the churches lead a community Good Friday service. This has been going on for several years, but I really liked this one. And I want to say thanks, Shane, because I borrowed from you (I gave you credit, in case you are worried.) Our service focused on the healing power of the cross. We called it a Service of Hope and Healing.
We had three worship stations as people entered the building on the way into the auditorium. The first was a station for “Letting Go.” People were invited to write down the pains, burdens, and sins that they carry and then pray about turning those things over to God. When they were ready to let go and trust God to take it, they lit the paper, which was actually flash paper so that those things literally went up in flames and disappeared.
The next station was a handwashing station. We had scripture from John about when Jesus washed the disciples feet for them to read as they waited their turn. We also talked with people about how in modern times it’s our hands rather than our feet that carry the dirt of the world. As cool as it would be to do footwashing, we felt that it would be too cumbersome for people to take off their shoes and put them back on. This was a nice alternative.
The last station invited participants to pray about both physical and emotion pain. There were tables set up with visual elements and those tables were covered with butcher paper so that people could write down their prayers if they wanted, or words of encouragement for others. We also provided more scriputre about healing here.
Then as people went into the auditorium, they were reminded that we need to quiet the chatter in our minds to really hear God, so there was soft music playing and they were invited to pray or read provided scripture.
The more “formal” part of the worship started with a few songs led by a band. Then three of our youth read your poem “Insecurities.” When they switched reader, they overlaped for a few lines so that one reader joined in and the other faded away. At the end, “God am I good enough,” they echoed each other. It was very powerful.
We then had readers read the scripture passages about healing and also the gospel for Good Friday, followed by another song.
The next part was a DVD presentation. Five of the youth were filmed doing the monologues from your dramatic reading “Does He” and instead of them singing at the end we had some artsy shots of them with Chris McDonald’s version of Amazing Grace playing over the top.
One of the kids gave a message and we finished up with some more music. We had a lot of good feedback and it felt like a very powerful night.