Almighty and ever living God, in your tender love for the human race you sent your Son our Savior Jesus Christ to take upon him our nature, and to suffer death upon the cross, giving us the example of his great humility: Mercifully grant that we may walk in the way of his suffering, and also share in his resurrection; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen
The Response: Psalm 31:9-16 was led by David Maitland. * (verse 16) “Make your face to shine upon your servant, and in your loving kindness save me.”
The First Reading was read by Arthur Clark: Isaiah 50:4-9. Isaiah tells how he is open to God when God speaks to him. He tells how because God helps him face all of his adversities and he is not afraid to face them. He is not afraid to face his adversities. “It is the Lord God who helps me; who will declare me guilty?”
The Second Reading was read by John Greve from Philippians 2:5-11. Paul explains how Jesus was willing to empty himself from being God and take on a human likeness. He walked and lived with humans so they would know he understood them. Jesus was obedient unto God, even to the point of death on a cross. God has exalted him above all others in heaven and earth and will have everyone worship him and declare him as Jesus Christ the Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Reverend Frnka read the Gospel of Luke 22:14-23:56. This is the record of how Jesus introduced the first Eucharist, The Lord’s Supper. He took the disciples to a room and gave them wine and bread indicating that it was his body and blood. He wanted them to remember him always and was preparing for his death on the cross. He also predicted his betrayal by Judas and his arrest. Then the disciples had a dispute about who would be the greatest among them. Jesus reprimanded them and told them they must be humble like servants willing to serve the Lord. They still had difficulty understanding that the Kingdom of God was not like the earthly kingdoms and kings. They were told that they would be with him in the heavenly kingdom and continue to serve Him there. He then predicted Peter’s betrayal during his trial and Peter disputed him saying he would never betray his Lord.
Jesus’ time to die was drawing near, so after the supper he went up to the Mount of Olives to pray. Then Judas (true to the prediction) brought the soldiers to arrest him. While he was on trial, the prediction of Peter’s betrayal also came true. Jesus was finally convicted due to the demands of the crowd and he was beaten and crucified. When he was dead, his body was placed in a tomb belonging to a kind man named Joseph. The women who followed him and loved him went home to prepare spices and ointments for his body.
Reverend Frnka told how year after year we listen to this story. It has a hold on us for it tells about how Jesus gave us our salvation and tells of his passion. A great truth in the story is how we all need his love. Rather than being alone, we want to belong and be loved. It is a story of what God did for us in his pure love. We need to let God love us and open ourselves to his great love. At Jesus’ death the Holy Spirit was loosed upon everybody to leave them with a feeling of comfort and guidance.
This is considered the “Greatest Story Ever Told.” Turn to it and listen to it. We want to be like Jesus and strive to have love for all mankind. When people no longer would listen to his prophets, he came to earth himself to teach us of God’s love, even knowing that his end would be suffering and death. We certainly know that we are fully loved by him. What greater way is there to show his love than by forgiving us and dying for us on the cross.
During this Holy Week St. Matthew’s will have three services, each at 7 p.m.; Wednesday Tenebrae, Maundy Thursday and Good Friday. Easter Sunday service will be at 9 a.m.
We welcome everyone to attend and worship with us.
PIM web site.