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Holy Week and Easter events

The high point of the church calendar is coming on Easter Sunday, April 21. John Wesley UMC has a number of special events leading up to Easter Sunday at the church. Come join us and bring your friends.  Help spread the word!

We invite you to attend the Maundy Thursday and Good Friday services to experience Jesus Christ’s last moments before his death and burial in the tomb. Eat at the table of the Last Supper, where Jesus broke bread with his disciples, even with the one who would come to betray him in death. Experience the dimming lights at the Tenebrae service, where darkness seems to triumph against the light. Let your heart tremble at the mournful words sung by the choir, Were you there when they crucified my Lord?

Thursday, April 18 — Maundy Thursday service at 7 pm

All are invited to come for Holy Communion  during the traditional Maundy Thursday service in the sanctuary.

The service gets its name from the Latin word mandatum which means commandment, and commemorates the last supper — the Passover meal — that Jesus shared with his disciples before his arrest and crucifixion.

Experience a “living last supper” as we hear from the 12 disciples and watch as they break bread around the table as they did at Jesus’ last supper. The congregation will then be invited to participate in communion by sitting at the same table in the places where the disciples sat.  You may find yourself in the seat of Matthew the tax collector, John the beloved, or even Judas the traitor as you break bread and pass the cup.

Friday, April 19 — Youth Cross Walk at 12 noon

John Wesley Youth will gather at noon in front of the crosses on the lawn for scripture reading and prayer. They will then carry the middle cross silently up and down Savannah Highway, reflecting on the passages they read and the significance of the crucifixion.

After about 30 minutes, they will return to the church and replace the cross, closing the session with prayer.

Even though the crosswalk occurs on a busy highway in view of hundreds of passersby, the event is not about drawing public attention to Good Friday according to JWUMC Youth Director David Boudolf. “The whole point of doing this,” he said, ” is to get our youth to think about what Christ gave up for them.”

Friday, April 19 —  Tenebrae Service at 7 pm  

The word Tenebrae is Latin for shadows. The Tenebrae Service is a candlelight service which brings to mind the passion of Christ and his death on the cross.

The service, which begins with a series of lighted candles, includes scripture readings, prayer, meditation and music. After each scripture reading, the candles are extinguished symbolizing the fading loyalty of the disciples and friends of Jesus. The gradual diminishing of light portrays the diminishing light of the world as Jesus was departing from it.

The service ends with no benediction and the people leave in silence.

Sunday, April 21 — Easter Sunday — Celebrating the risen Lord!

Join us for the celebration of Easter at any of our three services.  

  • 8:30 am – Traditional service – Sanctuary
  • 10:50 am – Contemporary service — Leisure Ministries Room (gym)
  • 11:00 am — Traditional service — Sanctuary.

In order to allow visitors more parking space at the church on Easter Sunday, JWUMC members are encouraged to park at our remote lot on Savannah Highway in front of Sherwin Williams and Hay Tire.  A shuttle bus will run continuously from 7:30 a.m. until 1 p.m. between that lot and the church.  Drop-off will be on Moore Street beside the sanctuary.

Everyone is invited to enjoy coffee and rolls which will be available at the drop-off spot as well as the regular coffee spot near the church parking lot until 11 am.

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