Sensory Good Friday
During Lent our church focussed on our senses, spending a week each on sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell. We decided that it would be a good idea to continue this theme for our All Age Good Friday prayer stations.
People chose a station to start with and stayed with it. We gave people time to take part in the actvities and then sang a Taize chant when it was time to move on.
Station 1: Jesus before Pilate - touch
Bible reading card:When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. "I am innocent of this man's blood," he said. "It is your responsibility!"
All the people answered, "His blood is on us and on our children!"
Then he released Barabbas to them.
But he had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified.
Matthew 27, verses 24-26
Things needed for focus:Bowl of water; soap; towel; whip; blue shimmery cloths; red ribbons/organza. Blue shimmer stones and bowl of water for activity; small lengths of string for prayer response
Activities:Would you like to dip your finger in the water and make the sign of the cross on your other hand?
Would you like to place a shiny blue stone in the water and say sorry for the times when you haven't done the right thing?
Prayer response:Would you like to tie knots in the string and pray for people who are suffering?
Station 2: The Road to Golgotha - sight
Bible reading card:As the soldiers led him away, they seized Simon from Cyrene, who was on his way in from the country, and put the cross on him and made him carry it behind Jesus. A large number of people followed him, including women who mourned and wailed for him.
Jesus turned and said to them, "Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me; weep for yourselves and for your children.
"For the time will come when you will say, 'Blessed are the childless women, the wombs that never bore and the breasts that never nursed!' Then they will say to the mountains, 'Fall on us!' and to the hills, 'Cover us!'
For if people do these things when the tree is green, what will happen when it is dry?"
Luke 23, 26-31
Things needed for focus:Postcards of stations of the cross, pictures of faces of women weeping. Black paper and pastels; leaf shapes and branch for prayer response
Activities:Would you like to draw a picture on the black card?
Prayer response:Would you like to write the name of someone who is sad or mourning on a leaf shape and hang it on the tree?
Station 3: The crucifixion - sound
Bible reading cards:At this station we had people reading the script:
"Here is your king," Pilate said to the Jews.
But they shouted, "Take him away! Take him away! Crucify him!"
"Shall I crucify your king?" Pilate asked.
"We have no king but Caesar," the chief priests answered.
Finally Pilate handed him over to them to be crucified. So the soldiers took charge of Jesus.
Carrying his own cross, he went out to the place of the Skull (which in Aramaic is called Golgotha).
There they crucified him, and with him two others—one on each side and Jesus in the middle.
John 19, verses 14-18
From noon until three in the afternoon darkness came over all the land. About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, "Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?" (which means "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?")
Matthew 27, verses 45 - 46
Things needed for focus:Cross with red organza cloth and red ribbons. Basket of nails, hammer and wood, (corkboard set for children).
Nails and wire for prayer response, lolly sticks and wool for children
Activities:Would you like to hammer a nail in the wood?
Prayer response:Would you like to make a cross and pray for victims of violence and oppression who are calling out for help, and a change of heart amongst the voices of the oppressors.
Station 4: "I thirst" - taste
Bible reading card:Later, knowing that everything had now been finished, and so that Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, "I am thirsty."
A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it and put it on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus' lips.
When he had received the drink, Jesus said, "It is finished."
With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
John 19, verses 17 - 37
Things needed for focus:Sponge on stick, terracotta jar, small wooden cross. Bread sticks and vinegar; stones and cloths
Activities:Would you like to dip a breadstick in the vinegar and taste the bitterness?
Prayer response:Would you like to wrap a stone in cloth and place it at the foot of the cross, laying down your burden, and getting rid of the bitter taste of life?
Station 5: The burial - smell
Bible reading card:
Later, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate for the body of Jesus.
Now Joseph was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly because he feared the Jewish leaders. With Pilate's permission, he came and took the body away.
He was accompanied by Nicodemus, the man who earlier had visited Jesus at night.
Nicodemus brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds. Taking Jesus' body, the two of them wrapped it, with the spices, in strips of linen. This was in accordance with Jewish burial customs. At the place where Jesus was crucified, there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb, in which no one had ever been laid.
John 19, verses 38 - 41
Things needed for focus:"tomb" made out of black sheets draped over chairs/play tent, tray of spices/bunches of rosemary. Organza bags, strips of white cloth, pens
Activities:Would you like to fill a bag with spices?
Prayer response:Would you like to draw a sign or symbol for Christ on a linen strip, and then place it in the tomb?