Last night over fifty attendees gathered in Bailey Hall for the final Lenten meal of the season. Over the course of these past several weeks, it was wonderful to experience the numbers at the meals grow, and the more contemporary worship style flowing so freely & fluidly! The meal was italian fare, with pasta, bread, salad & desert.
The theme for the evening was compassion, and the “heart” or love that God makes known to us. We shared prayers and songs. This evening, were treated to three performances by a youth choir that Pastor Marisa had gathered. The attendees very much enjoyed the youth’s energy & exuberance as they sang more new and contemporary tunes. One song that the children sang was Audrey Assad’s For Love of You. This song was new to the youth, and they greatly enjoyed making it their own during rehearsals and sharing it with the congregation!
There were three devotionals, or hands-on projects, as part of the evening’s worship centered on heart & compassion. People were given the opportunity to go from table to table to take advantage of as many projects as time allowed.
First, we made crosses from palm fronds – the instructions were challenging at first, but when we all worked together we came up with a multitude of crosses & proudly displayed them to one another as we completed them!
Second, there was the option to create a prayer pocket with cross stitch design. Folks designed their own pre made pocket and completed it by folding a prayer into it, and taking it away with them as a devotional piece.
Third, folks made bracelets out of duct tape with a youth volunteer, and then affixed crosses to them as a decoration. Lots of smiles and energy in the room as we reflected on the cross, and Christ’s immense love for all of humanity.
Here are the two main concepts we reflected on in our worship before we adjourned:
- How have you experienced or witnessed God’s compassion and love expressed? How have you witnessed people infused with God’s love carry that love forth into the world, and the lives of others?
- Reflect on Jesus’ death on the cross. What are your thoughts about his self-sacrifice, his humanity? Reflect on Jesus’ compassion for humanity. What aspects of the crucifixion are most moving for you as we enter this Holy Week?
Then with a final song and a prayer, we bade farewell to one another until Palm Sunday and the beginning of Holy Week in a few days time.
Do you have further reflections on the subject of compassion and Jesus Christ that you would like to share with the group? Please leave your comments below for further discussion and response.