Friday, April 18, 2014

Good Friday Prayer displays

On Good Friday afternoon at Seal I put up a number of reflective displays for people to come and look at in their own time. They usually remain in church for at least a week after Easter Sunday, so if you haven't had a chance to see them today, you can pop into church on any day to spend some time looking at them.

We made shields at Messy Church, to remind us of the guards who guarded Jesus' tomb. They were determined that he would stay where he had been put, but God had other ideas. Come along on Easter Sunday to see what happens next...

The display asks us to think about whether we sometimes try to squash the new opportunities and new life that are offered to us. We can sometimes be "guarded" in our welcome for them too, and try to stop anything from changing, even if it would be for the better.
At the Good Friday service the choir sang "The Appeal of the Crucified" by Stainer. "From the throne of his cross the King of Grief cries out to a world of unbelief, 'O men and women, afar and nigh, is it nothing to you all you that pass by?'". The display asks us to think about the times we might turn away from those who need help, or feel we have been shunned ourselves. It explores the different ways Christians have portrayed the Cross in art,  and ponders the idea that the Cross could be a throne - that something awful could contain blessing. At Messy Church we made shiny, jewelled crosses (crux gemmata) out of old CDs (so now you know what I wanted all those old CDs for!)

The donkey Jesus rode on on Palm Sunday can't have ever imagined that this would ever happen to him. At Messy Church we made donkeys out of cardboard and jiffy bags (like hobby horses) The children enjoyed riding them around the church!

The display asks us to think about times when we might have felt silly or thought no one would ever choose us. There is also a reproduction of "The Donkey's Tale" by Margaret Gray - you can read it here. 

How do you feel about your feet? On Maundy Thursday we heard the story of Jesus washing the disciples's feet, despite their protestations that this wasn't his job at all. This display asks us to think about our feet. How do they feel, and how do we feel about them? How would we have reacted if Jesus had wanted to wash them The display has pictures of many different feet, and invites us to consider what prayer we might say for those whose feet they are. It also has this poem by Moses Schulstein about the mountain of shoes at the German Nazi concentration camp of Majdanek in occupied Poland.

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