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Opening Responses
Reader We have come together to remember Jesus.
All repeat We have come together to remember Jesus.

 

Reader: Two thousand years ago, God sent his Son into the world.
The world was as sad and bad as it is today
and God wanted to love it better.
God sent Jesus into the world as a sign of his love.

 

Reader  Jesus is the sign of God's love.
All Jesus is the sign of God's love.

 

Reader Jesus was kind and loving.
He cured people who were sick.
He forgave people who had been sinners and who wanted to become good.
Jesus is the sign of God's forgiveness.
All Jesus is the sign of God's forgiveness.

 

Reader But some people were afraid of Jesus.
His love was too strong.
He did not take any notice of how rich or powerful people were.
He was on the side of people who were weak and hurt.
He stood up to those who were cruel.
Jesus is the sign of God's power.

 

All Jesus is the sign of God's power.

 

Reader The powerful people thought that,
if they killed Jesus,
they could have things their own way.
They chose a horrible way for him to die -
so that everyone would be ashamed of him.
And some of his best friends did run away.
But Jesus was strong and loving even when he was suffering.
Jesus is the sign of God's strength and love.

 

All Jesus is the sign of God's strength and love.

 

Reader But some people had learnt about God's love and strength through Jesus
and they did not run away.
Even with the soldiers and crowds all around them,
they did not give in to their fear.
They loved Jesus and wanted to do all they could to help him -
even if it did not seem to be very much.
They were a sign of God's love for Jesus.

 

All They were a sign of God's love for Jesus.

 

People who helped Jesus

(Show pictures of Station of the Cross or take the children around the Stations in the church - and talk with the children how various people helped Jesus)

          Simon of Cyrene

          Veronica

          Women of Jerusalem

          Mary - Jesus' mother

          John

          Mary Magdalene

 

Reader After Jesus died, all His friends wondered what it had all been about.

They were very sad.

Remembering that Jesus died can make us sad too.

But we remember that God's love is stronger than death.

 

Veneration
Children can be invited to lay a flower at the foot of the cross

 

Helping Jesus in the world today.
Reader We can't go back two thousand years to help Jesus on the first Good Friday.
But we can remember some of Jesus' words:
You are not My servants - you are My friends
and I have chosen you to carry on My work of loving the world better.
Love one another as I have loved you.
If you do this then everyone will know that you are My friends.
They will know that I am alive in you and you are alive in Me.

 

All We want to be a friend like Simon.
Reader When we see someone struggling with something that is too big or heavy.
All We will help them to carry it - like Simon helping Jesus.

 

(Candle lit by Simon's picture/ staton)

 

All We want to be a friend like Veronica.
Reader When we see someone who is hurt or ill
All We will look after them - like Veronica helping Jesus.

 

All We want to be friends like the women of Jerusalem
Reader When we see someone who is being treated unfairly
All We will stand up for them - like the women helped Jesus.

 

All We want to be a friend like Jesus' mother, Mary.
Reader When our mums and dads fuss and worry about us
All We will remember they do it because they love us - like Jesus' mother loved Him.

 

All We want to be a friend like Mary Magdalene.

 

Reader When someone is sad or hurt and there isn't much we can do

 

All We will stay with them and care for them - like Mary cared for Jesus.

 

All We want to be a friend like John

 

Reader When people make up lies or tell cruel stories about someone
All We will talk about the good things they have done -
like John talked about Jesus

 

:Reader

Doing something good is like sowing a seed. We may think that it has been forgotten or that nothing has happened.
But, sooner or later, the seed begins to grow and the goodness gets bigger and stronger.
Jesus' friends never thought they would see Him again - but three days later, He was alive and sharing His love and peace with them.
Our helping may not seem to be very big or very strong - but God can do great things with it.
We may not always see it ourselves - but God does see how our love spreads His love in the world.
We are going to plant a tiny plant (or seed) - as a sign of wanting to do good things for Jesus.
God's sunlight and rain - and our looking after it will help it to grow bigger and stronger and more beautiful.
It will be a sign of what God and His friends can do together.

(Take the children to where the planting will take place - and help them to plant their plants/ seeds. Choose the Closing prayer as appropriate)

 

Reader We have planted a small plant - 
a sign of God's love for life.
We ask God to bless us - and our plants -
and with our help to make them grow strong
and give us pleasure in the summer.
Let us remember that it is a sign of wanting to do beautiful things for Jesus.
We thank God for new life.

 

We have sown seeds deep into dark earth.
We remember that Jesus was laid in a dark tomb
but rose from the dead on the first Easter morning.
We will watch for the shoots that show the signs of new life -
and remember Jesus coming out into the sunshine of eternal life.

 

We have planted our plants as our Easter gift to our parish/ community.
We ask God to bless them and everyone who will see and enjoy them.
Let them be a reminder of our Easter joy
and a sign of our wish to do beautiful things for Jesus.

 

ALL AMEN

2004 Wellspring

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