Resources for Good Friday

These are resources meant mainly for The Anglican Church of St Thomas the Apostle, Kefalas, on the island of Crete in Greece, but others may find them helpful!

24056371.6fbbb49b.640

Christ on the Cross, made in Tirol or Salzburg (Austria), ca. 1125-1150, now in the the Fuentiduena Chapel in the Cloisters, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York NY

Read/Listen

In the western Christian tradition (Catholic, Anglican, Lutheran, and others) the core of the Good Friday Liturgy is the reading or chanting of the Passion according to John.

The Passion is chanted in English by Kevin Vogel, a Roman Catholic priest in Nebraska, in this Youtube video.

St Thomas Kirche

St. Thomas Church (Thomaskirche), Leipzig

If you want a musical version in German you might listen in to Bach’s St. John’s Passion, which is being live-streamed from Bach’s church in Leipzig where it premiered in 1724. Details are on this page, and the live stream will be on their Facebook page.  It starts at 3:00 PM CEST, which, of course, is 4:00 PM EEST in Greece, 9:00 am EDT in Ottawa, and 6:00 am PDT in Victoria.

Arvo Pärt set the Passion in Latin translation to music in 1989. I find it particularly powerful.

 

The full readings for Good Friday are here.

stations-of-the-cross

From the Stations of the Cross by artist Chris Woods, originally in St. David of Wales Anglican Church in Vancouver.

Pray

After the reading of the Passion according to John, the next most important part are the prayers, which come in two parts. First, the Reproaches, or an anthem of penitence, punctuated by the Trisagion. Common Worship from the Church of England has a form of it here, but I confess I prefer the version used by the Anglican Church of Canada in my old Diocese of British Columbia. Here it is:

Is it nothing to you, all you who pass by?
Look and see if there is any sorrow like my sorrow
which was brought upon me,
which the Lord inflicted on the day of his fierce anger.
Holy God, holy and mighty,
holy and immortal one, have mercy upon us.

O my people, O my Church,
What have I done to you,
or in what have I offended you?
Testify against me.
I led you forth from the land of Egypt,
and delivered you by the waters of baptism,
but you have prepared a cross for your Saviour.
Holy God, holy and mighty,
holy and immortal one, have mercy upon us.

I led you through the desert forty years,
and fed you with manna.
I brought you through tribulation and penitence,
and gave you my body, the bread of heaven,
but you have prepared a cross for your Saviour.
Holy God, holy and mighty,
holy and immortal one, have mercy upon us.

What more could I have done for you that I have not done?
I planted you, my chosen and fairest vineyard,
I made you the branches of my vine;
but when I was thirsty, you gave me vinegar to drink,
and pierced with a spear the side of your Saviour.
Holy God, holy and mighty,
holy and immortal one, have mercy upon us.

Celebrant:  I went before you in a pillar of cloud,
and you have led me to the judgement hall of Pilate.
I scourged your enemies and brought you to a land of freedom,
but you have scourged, mocked, and beaten me.
I gave you the water of salvation from the rock,
but you have given me gall and left me to thirst.
Holy God, holy and mighty,
holy and immortal one, have mercy upon us.

I gave you a royal sceptre,
and bestowed the keys to the kingdom,
but you have given me a crown of thorns.
I raised you on high with great power,
but you have hanged me on the cross.
Holy God, holy and mighty,
holy and immortal one, have mercy upon us.

My peace I gave, which the world cannot give,
and washed your feet as a sign of my love,
but you draw the sword to strike in my name,
and seek high places in my kingdom.
I offered you my body and blood,
but you scatter and deny and abandon me.
Holy God, holy and mighty,
holy and immortal one, have mercy upon us.

I sent the Spirit of truth to guide you,
and you close your hearts to the Counsellor.
I pray that all may be as one in the Father and me,
but you continue to quarrel and divide.
I call you to go and bring forth fruit,
but you cast lots for my clothing.
Holy God, holy and mighty,
holy and immortal one, have mercy upon us.

I grafted you into the tree of my chosen Israel,
and you turned on them with persecution and mass murder.
I made you joint heirs with them of my covenants,
but you made them scapegoats for your own guilt.
Holy God, holy and mighty,
holy and immortal one, have mercy upon us.

I came to you as the least of your brothers and sisters;
I was hungry and you gave me no food,
I was thirsty and you gave me no drink,
I was a stranger and you did not welcome me,
naked and you did not clothe me,
sick and in prison and you did not visit me.
Holy God, holy and mighty,
holy and immortal one, have mercy upon us.

The second part of the prayers are the Solemn Intercessions, which can be found here; you’ll need to scroll down to The Prayers of Intercession.

Reflect

I wrote a reflection last year on Good Friday on George Herbert’s A Dialogue-Anthem.

I also wrote a meditation on the reading from Isaiah 52.13-53.12.

Last year Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, with others, created a series of short podcasts on the stations of the Cross.

Hymns

About Bruce Bryant-Scott

Canadian. Husband. Father. Christian. Recovering Settler. A priest of the Church of England, Diocese in Europe, on the island of Crete in Greece.
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