“Remain here and stay awake with me”
At the Maundy Thursday service we remember the institution of the Lord’s Supper as Jesus offered himself in bread and wine to his closest friends. At the end of the service we remember Jesus’ betrayal and abandonment in the Garden of Gethsemane as we strip the altar and either consume the remaining Elements of Holy Communion or remove them to a chapel of repose, where we keep an uninterrupted watch with them until they are shared and finally consumed at the Good Friday Mass of the Pre-Sanctified. As we keep watch, we go with Christ from the garden to Caiaphas’ house, to Pilate’s palace, the judgement seat at Gabbatha, and finally the foot of the Cross and the tomb.
In order to keep this tradition, we need to be sure that we are able to stay awake and watch with Christ. I hope that you will sign up for an hour or longer to keep vigil with the Body of Christ at our temporary chapel of repose in the Yurt. The first watch will begin when the elements are taken from the church at the Maundy Thursday Service and the final watch will end when they are returned to the church immediately before the Good Friday service. There is room for several to watch together, but it is important that at least one person be present for the whole span of time. We will have a signup sheet available at services or you can call the office during office hours (T-F, 9:00-noon).
If we do not fill the watch schedule, the Good Friday service will take place regardless, but will not include the distribution of Communion.