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Good Friday

For God had such love for the world
that he gave his only Son,
so that whoever has faith in him
may not come to destruction
but have eternal life.
John 3:16

We remember today as the day on which Jesus died. Cruelly nailed to the cross, as it was customary with particularly bad criminals. We are stuck at home today, and I miss the service. I miss the songs that belong to Good Friday. I miss the empty altar. I miss you.

Perhaps the terrible happenings on Good Friday are only bearable because we already have Easter in the back of our minds. I very much hope for you that trust in God, especially in those moments when we experience despair, remains. Because we know through Good Friday that the darkest moment is not the end of all. God remains God who holds the world and all of us in his hands, even if what we see makes us doubt it.

I am sending you a picture of a painting along with a text today – instead of a sermon. An image that wants to be viewed with some time. An image that takes up a classic painting theme. “Ecce Homo!” – “Look, what a person” is one possible translation. Words of Pilate as they are handed down in the Gospel of John. What a man indeed. What patience, what love for us!

I invite you to contemplate the picture. We are placed as observers by the painter, we stand in front of him. We stand with the crowd and we have to decide about life and death.

Please click here for the picture and here for the text, open both files and look at the picture while reading.

I am adding a prayer today.

As always, you will find links to services (prerecorded and by Zoom) that can be found on the Internet:

Lunenburg Lutheran, Nova Scotia (prerecorded)

Redeemer Toronto
At 11:00 AM join us by Zoom use the following link:
https://zoom.us/j/936690560
Meeting ID: 936 690 560

Also, there is a musical link to the St. Matthew Passion (Bach).

For Good Friday this year, I have decided to give the music a special place remembering the suffering of our Lord Jesus Christ.

May God’s Blessing be with you today!

Your

Prayer:
Lord Jesus Christ, we think especially of you today. You suffered. You have not avoided suffering. People not only treated you unfairly, they also mocked you. Your life on earth was all human. You suffered how many people suffer. People who are persecuted, people who are mocked, people who are laughed at, people who do not notice suffering. You stand with them too. You are there for them, for all of us. You are consistent in your love for us humans. Even if the consequence last meant your death. You have not used your power, because your path is a path of impotence, your path is a path of solidarity with the weak.
Look at the lives of people in your world today. Look at all sufferers, suffering because they are on the run, suffering because they are in war zones and cannot even flee. Suffering because they don’t have enough to eat. Suffering because nobody visits them. Suffering because nobody is allowed to visit them. Suffering because they cannot bear loneliness. Suffering because they don’t understand why they can’t even go out the door.
We ask you to be especially with those who care for the lonely, sick and suffering. Strengthen all those who risk their lives for others in the medical service. Help them, their soul, in this crisis.
Be with those who are particularly dear to us, whose names we bring to you.

We trust you, we call onto you as your children

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come.
Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial, and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours,
now and forever.
Amen.

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