A 'Last Supper' Tenebrae and Communion Service: Maundy Thursday

2013, 3 pp
As a commemoration of the last supper, this service includes an extended communion meal. Participants are invited to gather around tables in a basement or fellowship hall to enter deeply into the meal and its story. Early in the service there is space for a meal to be served.

This service imagines that we gather together with Jesus and his disciples for this meal. A ‘head table’ should be set up at a prominent spot in the room, with places set for Jesus and his disciples. Arrange ahead of time for 13 people to play those roles. Consistent dress, all black for instance, can help to set their distinctive characters. Jesus and his disciples do not have speaking roles, but they will take turns extinguishing the candles as the service moves along. A lit candle should be set in front of each place at Jesus’ table.

The service itself consists of gospel readings that move towards the night of Jesus’ last supper and arrest. After each reading a candle is extinguished by one of the disciples. Hymns are interspersed at appropriate spots, chosen thematically so as to offer space to reflect on that part of the story.

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