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Triduum Prayer Service
by Jean Grant
Help your student understand the Triduum with this prayer service.
Preparations: Prior to the prayer service, ask for a volunteer to play the part of Jesus, another volunteer to have his or her feet washed, two volunteers to hold the cross, and another volunteer to drape the white fabric on the cross. Gather together a pan with water, a towel, a large crucifix and an alcohol wipe, and a long piece of white cloth to drape over the sides of the cross. Assign one or more readers for the Reader parts.

Leader: Holy Week begins on Palm Sunday with Jesus’ triumphant entry into the city. The Triduum is a special part of Holy Week. On Holy Thursday, we remember Jesus’ Last Supper with his apostles. It was at this meal that Jesus gave us the Eucharist which brings us closer to him each day. On Good Friday, we pause to remember Jesus’ death upon the cross. Finally, on Easter Vigil and Easter, we turn once again to the Risen Jesus, Our Savior, who overcame sin and death.

All: In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

(Position person on chair to have feet washed, and “Jesus” ready to wash feet.)

Leader: It is evening, and we are at the last meal that Jesus had with his apostles. Each apostle is leaning this way and that trying to see Jesus better. What is he doing? Wait! He looks as if he is going to wash our feet! We should wash his!

Reader: (Reads John 13:1-15)

“Jesus” washes the feet of the volunteer.

All: The Lord has been mindful of us; he will bless us. (Psalm 116:12)

Leader: Here we stand at the foot of the Cross on Calvary, afraid and trembling after seeing what they have done to Jesus. He endured so much for each of us to save us. How great is His love for us! Wait! He is speaking!

Reader: (Reads Mark 15:33-39)
Volunteers hold the crucifix, and all venerate the crucifix by coming forward to kiss the feet of the Jesus figure on the crucifix. Wipe the feet with alcohol before another person approaches.

All: The Lord has been mindful of us; he will bless us.

Leader: It has been quiet since Jesus’ death and burial. Finally, Mary Magdalene and Mary are on their way to the tomb.

Reader: (Reads Matthew 28:2-10)
The two volunteers continue to hold the crucifix, and another volunteer steps forward with the long white cloth to drape it over the sides of the crucifix.

All: The Lord has been mindful of us; he will bless us.

Leader: Jesus knows that our hearts are overflowing with his love and goodness to us. We thank him and will remain close to him through his gift of the Eucharist, when at Mass we recreate the Last Supper. Feel Jesus’ presence. He always walks with us, and loves us beyond all measure.

All: The Lord has been mindful of us; he will bless us.

All close with the prayer given to us by Jesus himself, the Our Father. Alleluia! (Begin using at Easter.)

Jean Grant teaches at St. Charles Borromeo School, St. Charles, MO.

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