Good Friday 2019

At the united Good Friday Service (4/21/19) at Chicago UBF, we read the whole Easter Narrative from Matthew’s gospel (26:17-28:20) as the basis for our meditation and worship that night. Six readers (Grace, Lupita, Jonathan, John, Chatelaine, and Bahati) took turns telling the story of Jesus’ last supper, Gethsemane prayer, arrest, trials, crucifixion, burial, resurrection, and great commission in a candle lit sanctuary.

A five person orchestra consisting of two violins (Matthew, Juhui), a viola (Grace), a cello (Sam), and a clarinet (Jim) played music to the readings. The text was projected on the screen with beautiful images so the congregation could read along. Throughout the readings the congregation was prompted to participate in the worship service through taking communion, reading passages from Isaiah 53 with the lead readers, singing hymns, and praise and worship. At the moment of Jesus agonizing prayer, “my father, my father, why have you forsaken me” Chatelaine Dunord read the first half of Psalm 22, the Psalm that Jesus was quoting, ending in a sorrowful gospel solo. All of our hearts were pierced and moved as we meditated on the moment of Jesus death. But as the story progressed to the resurrection, as we sang the fourth verse from the hymn, “were you there” “were you there when he rose up from the grave?” The lights turned on one by one. We were filled with resurrection joy and hope. The resurrection reader read with great joy which led into a praise song. Then we heard four life testimonies from our baptism candidates revealing the power of the resurrection which is still alive and at work in our world and community today. The night ended with more praise and worship and food fellowship. It was a blessed worship service in community worshipping king Jesus who died for our sins, rose from the dead and lives today ruling and reigning over all creation and his church.

Written by Christian M.
Program coordinator

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