Good Friday

Good Friday Worship

Holy Week
Rev. Laura Kavanagh March 29, 2024 Holy Week


So this is love!

Brought to this:
stretched on a crossbar.
It would make a grown person cry,
if there were any tears left.

Brought to this,
because you believed too much in what love could do,
because you stood alone and trusted what everyone else mistrusts.

What folly! What foolishness!

So this is love!
What were you expecting, Jesus?
What did you see that the rest of us missed, Jesus?
What did you miss that the rest of us saw?

Did you die for a broken dream, abandoning – or abandoned by – your mighty ideals?

What filled your soul so?

What grasped your mind, and shaped your path, to leave you here?

So this is love!
Brought to this…


Good Friday is a difficult part of our faith – a day of darkness and death – a day that can seem without hope of sunshine or fresh air. What would it have been like… to be there?

We remember how our story began with a hero’s welcome, when Jesus rode into Jerusalem and the crowds embraced him in their hearts. They celebrated as he rode into their community. It was a day of joy and festivities. Remember welcoming him with palms? Were you there…?

Later that same week, Jesus and the friends he dearly loved celebrated the holy Passover meal. They gathered alone in the Upper Room. They shared the bread and wine. It was a moment of quiet intimacy. Remember the taste of that meal? Were you there…?

In that room, Jesus taught those who loved him how to follow. He taught that the master is to be the servant, and the servant is to be the master. Their feet were washed – they participated in a poignant ritual. It confounded all they thought they knew. Remember the sound of water pouring into the bowl? Were you there…?

Jesus’ love was met with betrayal. Money exchanged for love – a treacherous kiss. They milled about in the garden, filled with uncertainty. It was a night of dark confusion. Remember the soldiers? Remember running away? Were you there..?

Some thought they were truer than others. They said that they would always remain loyal to Jesus. But in the end, even those closest to him denied Jesus. They said, “I do not know him.” It was a statement of despair. Remember when the rooster crowed? Were you there…?

In the end, even the crowds that welcomed him with palm branches waving chose to hand Jesus over to death. They released Barabbas and condemned Jesus. They shouted, “Crucify him!” It was a frenzied cry. Remember the crowd? Were you there…?

In the end, life drained from Jesus’ body. Upon the cross, the power of the world took away his last earthly breath. The ground shook and the curtain was torn. Some stood at his feet, mute and forlorn. Remember when the sun refused to shine? Were you there…?

What began with palms ends with the tomb. What began with love is touched by death. What is understood as an end still continues through God’s love and power. They brought scented oil and clean sheets. It was a somber procession. Remember when they laid him in the tomb. Were you there…?