Reflections, prayers and family activities for Monday of Holy Week
 
March Team Ministry
 
  April 6th, 2020
 
 News for the parishes of St John, St Mary, St Peter and St Wendreda
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 HOLY WEEK - MONDAY

We are offering a meditation each day for this very strange and exceptional Holy Week. We start by considering some of the events in the accounts of the Last Supper.

You will also find a few activities for those of you with children (and even some of those without might like to have a go!)


Blessings,
Rev'd Andrew
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Monday of Holy Week 
 
Today's reflection is based on John's Gospel, Chapter 13, verses 3-17. 
If you don't have a Bible to hand, you can find the reading by clicking the below button.
 
Read here
 A Reflection from Revd. Andrew...
 
It is Passover time, Jesus gathers with disciples and others in the upper room. He is, with many crowds of people, a pilgrim come to Jerusalem for this feast of liberation, yearning, solidarity in adversity and hope. Jesus has chosen the venue, the disciples have to follow the unusual sight of a man carrying a pitcher of water to find the venue. Perhaps there is a need for security in this climate of risk and betrayal. Quite likely the chosen venue is the home of the mother of Mark. (Mark who would later become a companion of Paul in spreading the gospel and maybe his words were the foundation of the Gospel that bears his name, Mark).

Jesus is the host, he has offered the invitations, he has arranged the venue, he has ensured there is food and drink. All is ready and the guests arrive.
And the host, Jesus, acts as the slave, not just taking their coats or showing them to their places, but washing the dust of the streets from their feet.

Refreshing – hospitable – loving – demeaning – unexpected – challenging.

Peter objects. 
Peter does not understand. 
Peter, perhaps, wants to be Jesus’s servant.
Peter is stubborn.Peter changes his view.
Peter shows huge, misdirected, enthusiasm.
Peter wants to be the centre of attention.
Peter has to wait to understand.
Peter has his feet, just his feet, washed.

Jesus washes feet,
Jesus washes feet, because he is teacher and Lord.
Jesus washes feet to set an example.
Jesus washes feet and asks that we should do the same.
Jesus washes feet so that we have a share in him.

But we cannot today wash feet, not in ceremony in church, nor really in any other way. Even washing the feet of those with whom we are self -isolating would seem an unnecessary close social contact.
We cannot host, we cannot welcome people into our homes. We cannot arrange parties, religious gatherings or even visit those who are in need.
And we certainly cannot touch, wash, caress feet or anything else.
So is this a story, an event, a command for previous times, other times and possibly hoped for future times? How can we respond to it in the here and now that we find ourselves?

There are those who are washing feet in the literal sense (and the rest of bodies too). Those who are isolating with family members who are babies or young children, the frail or confused; those who work in care homes; those who are in the front line in our hospitals caring for people with and without the virus; those who are with the dying and the dead.

They are all following the path of Jesus.
They are all doing as he did, as he wishes, as he asks, as he needs us to do.
In doing this, they are sharing in Jesus.
In doing this, they are sharing Jesus.
In giving care, we are in Jesus, whether it is in small or large helpings.
In receiving care, we are in Jesus, whether it is in small or large helpings.

Immediately prior to Jesus’s entry into Jerusalem for the Passover on what becomes Palm Sunday, Jesus’s own feet are anointed with expensive perfume or oil by Mary at Bethany, out of love, and as a sign of what is to come. He who will shortly wash the disciple’s feet has his feet washed.

Immediately after the tomb is discovered empty on what becomes Easter day, Jesus says to the same Mary, “Do not touch me, for now is not yet the time”.

Touching or not, different answers in different situations and times. Receiving, or giving, different responses in different situations and times. Host sometimes, guest sometimes; but always to serve.And sharing in Christ at all times and places.

The Lord is here, his Spirit is with us, so let us lift up our hearts, and give him thanks and praise.
                                 
                                                                                         God Bless, Andrew   
 
 
To read and/or print the full Reflection, Gospel reading and prayers please click here      
 
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Kids' Corner... 
 
Here are today's activities and worship resources for Monday of Holy Week - have a go - we would love to see how you get on..!
 
Feel free to tag one of our churches (@StJohnsMarch, @StPetersMarch, @StWendredasMarch) or tag Operations Manager @RebeccaMarchChurches to keep us updated!
 
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