VBS 2020

Worship: Sunday, April 5

Maundy Thursday Service

A Worship Service for Maundy Thursday

April 9, 2020

(to be celebrated alone or accompanied by those with whom you shelter in place)

First United Methodist Church, Chula Vista 

An Explanation:  The COVID-19 pandemic has created a new reality for our world and our church.  Many of the Worship Services provided by our church are done so online, we virtually worship together and this will be true for Good Friday and Easter Sunday.  Maundy Thursday is different though… it is often an experiential service incorporating a meal, candlelighting, footwashing, The Lord’s Supper and more. Rather than producing a service in which you all could view the experience of others, we thought it best to provide you with a service that you can do in your home and experience the rituals for yourselves.  Have fun, share the leader parts, and enjoy this unique opportunity to worship in your home.    

We invite you to adapt this service according to your family’s needs and abilities.  We recognize that many are “sheltering in place” alone and this presents a unique challenge.  Some will choose to observe the service alone, thereby deepening their understanding of the companionship of God.  Others may choose to connect by phone or video chat with others, thereby strengthening the bonds they have with one another.  We recommend that you observe this service at the dinner hour and following on Tuesday April 9, 2020, but any hour that day will work.  This service will work best if it follows a simple meal (soup and bread, beans and tortillas, rice and tofu, etc.) and make sure you save a portion of the meal for inclusion in the service.  We invite you to take a photo of any part of the service (including people or not) and send it to so that we might post these photos and together experience one another’s Maundy Thursday observance.    

Items you will need for a full observance of this service:

  • A Bible 
  • A candle for each participant
  • A glass of water 
  • A plate with a portion of your meal (a piece of bread, a tortilla, etc.) 
  • A basin full of soapy water
  • A hand towel 
  • A Phone/tablet/other online source for music 



Spend a few minutes to set up a room for the service.  There should be a place to sit for  everyone, a central table with the unlit candles, glass and plate and a separate chair with the basin and towel lying before it. You might put on some instrumental music and dim the lights a bit if possible     


Reader:  We gather together on this Maundy Thursday to remember Jesus’ love for his disciples and observe God’s love for us.  This is a solemn service, made ever more so by the Covid-19 pandemic, that separates us from many others and from our normal rhythms of life.  Let us observe this service knowing that many in our faith community are doing the same in their own way and that as we all observe together this day, we are drawn together as the Body of Christ. For this we give thanks, let us worship.  


Navigate to the following link to listen to the music together, keeping an attitude of solemn prayer throughout.  

Video Title: “Go to Dark Gethsemane”

Channel: TheNCrew EliEli

If you are without a music source spend a couple minutes meditating on this lyric from the hymn , Tis Finished!  The Messiah Dies. 

Tis finished!  The Messiah dies, cut off for sins, but not his own.  Accomplished is the sacrifice, the great redeeming work is done.  


Confession and Pardon 

Reader:  My sisters and brothers, Christ shows us his love by becoming a humble servant.  Let us draw near to God and confess our sin in the truth of God’s Spirit.

Reader (read each of the following bold lines, inviting the participants to repeat after you line by line.    

Most merciful God,
we your Church confess
that often our spirit has not been that of Christ.
Where we have failed to love one another as he loves us,
where we have pledged loyalty to him with our lips
and then betrayed, deserted, or denied him,
forgive us, we pray;
and by your Spirit make us faithful in every time of trial;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Reader:  Who is in a position to condemn? Only Christ. But Christ suffered and died for us, was raised from the dead and ascended on high for us, and continues to intercede for us. Believe the good news: In the name of Jesus Christ, you are forgiven!  Glory to God. Amen.


Scripture Lessons –  John 13:1-17

  Matthew 26:26-29 

Sermon – Each person take a moment and share your answers to any or all of the following 

questions (if you are observing alone, you may find it meaningful to journal your 

answers.  If you are observing with young children please take a moment to alter the 

questions so that they are developmentally appropriate for the age.) 

  1. What is the most humbling task you have ever had to perform?
  2. Is it more comfortable for you to serve others or to be served?
  3. Where is one place in your life that sacrifice, service and/or humility could be further developed?   

Responses to the Word

Concerns and Prayers – take a moment and encourage each person to share any prayer 

concerns they might have.  Once all have shared their concerns take some time of silence 

and invite each person to light their candle while silently offering their prayers. 

Footwashing — Footwashing is a powerful symbolic response to the Word, dramatizing the servanthood of Jesus, both on the night before his death and in his continuing presence in our midst.  Allow each person to have a chance to have their feet washed and to wash another’s feet. The act of washing is symbolic and can be accomplished by placing one’s feet in the basin and the one kneeling simply splashing water over the tops of the partially submerged feet.  


Presenting the Elements 

Reader:  We read earlier from the Gospel of Matthew about Jesus instituting what today we call Holy Communion.  There is an official way that we are led in receiving Holy Communion from our ordained clergy that sets this meal apart as a sacramental sign of God’s grace.  Now that we are separated from the church community, from our ordained clergy and from the sacrament of Holy Communion we return to the spirit of this meal that Jesus shared with his disciples.  He simply took the most common elements that would be on the table at each meal and told them that every time they ate of these elements to remember him and remember that he is always with them. We have elements from our meal and we are going to pray over these elements, pray the Lord’s Prayer together and then share in these elements.  This will be different than the Sacrament of Holy Communion but it will be no different than what Jesus asked his disciples to do when they gathered together.  

Let us pray:  O God, in remembrance of your mighty acts in Jesus Christ, we offer ourselves in praise and thanksgiving, as a holy and living sacrifice in union with Christ’s offering for us.  Pour out your Holy Spirit on us gathered here, by your Spirit make us one with Christ, one with each other and one in ministry to all the world. Now be one with us as we prayer together……Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom come, they will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.  Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever, amen.    

Take a few moments sharing the elements with all who are present.  



Navigate to the following link to listen to the music together, keeping an attitude of solemn prayer throughout.  

Video Title: “St. Olaf Choir – “What Wondrous Love” – Southern Harmony, arr. Robert Scholz

Channel: St. Olaf College

If you are without a music source spend a couple minutes meditating on this lyric from the hymn, Were You There?

Were you there when they crucified my Lord?  Were you there when they crucified my Lord? Sometimes it causes me to tremble, tremble, tremble. Were you there when they crucified my Lord?

Dismissal with Blessing 

Reader:  I am going to share the blessing that Pastor Brian gives at the conclusion of all worship 

services in the sanctuary….

Go in peace and live by faith, 

knowing that Jesus Christ goes before you to show you the way, 

behind you to give you courage, 

below you to lift you up, 

above you to protect you, 

and beside you to walk step and step each day of your journey.

Go in Peace and live by faith, Amen.  

The Peace 

Take a moment to share signs of God’s peace with one another 


This service was adapted from the United Methodist Book of Worship 

Worship: Sunday, March 29

Pastor’s Bible Study: Old Testament Overview

Session 1: The Worldview
Session 2: Creation and Fall
Session 3: The Patriarchs and Matriarchs
Session 4: The Torah
Session 5: The Kingdoms
Session 6: The Prophets

Digital “Passing the Peace” Videos

One thing that we can’t do while we’re apart is to “pass the peace” like we normally do. However, we thought we could do it digitally! Take a short video with you and your loved ones (whoever you’re isolating with) and send it to us!
  1. Open the camera app on your smartphone and select video
  2. Film a short (15 second) video checking in from where you are
    1. This video should have a greeting, your name(s), and a short blessing or sentiment
    2. Be sure to have the camera landscape (meaning it is wider than it is tall). This will help ensure the videos don’t have black side margins.
    3. Position the camera at eye level or slightly above. This will be the most flattering
    4. Try not to be backlit. If there is a light source behind you, be sure there is also one in front of you, behind the video recorder
    5. Bookend your clip with smiling or looking directly into the camera. 2-3 seconds of smiling/looking directly into the camera (before you speak and after finishing) will help with cropping
  3. Email the video to

Stations of the Cross – Virtual Tour


Worship: Sunday, March 22

Music Activities & Devotional: Sandyland

Hello FUMCCV Families!
Many of us are staying home these days with our children, and while there are a ton of online resources for activities and homeschooling, it can be difficult to filter through them all to find the right ones for your family. Since our children’s choirs (Voices in Praise and Cherub Choir) are both cancelled, I thought we might continue to provide music opportunities for your kiddos in other ways than our weekly rehearsals.
This week, I’m sending you a Music Devotional for a song called, “Sandyland,” which VIP just started learning last week. Inside the pdf, you’ll find activity ideas, a bible verse, discussion questions, and a link to a music track that you can listen to with your child.
Listen to “SANDYLAND” by Karen Lafferty
Ideas for activities:
1) Listen to the song and dance, clap, or play instruments along!
2) For readers, look at the sheet music and sing the lyrics while you listen to the song.
3) Get out your Bible, and read the verses that the lyrics are based on. Use the discussions questions provided to start a conversation with your child about the meaning of the verses.
4) If you have some music reading knowledge, look at the sheet music together and talk about music terms like measures, notes, rests, staves, repeat signs, etc.
5) Find this song on Spotify and start making a playlist of songs you can sing with your children.
I hope this is helpful and fun for your families!