Learn the Steps in the Passover Meal and the Passion Week

Categories: Easter (Passion Week)

One of our readers, Amy Julian, tried some of our suggestions for a more hands-on method for bringing Bible stories to life.

I finally decided to put into action some of your ideas for Sunday school. I teach the high school class, which usually includes one 16-year-old boy, and occasionally one 14-year-old boy. My daughter is 10 and the other SS teacher works with her (and the other semi-regular student in her class). On Easter, we had my daughter, the 16-year-old boy and his mom, and the Superintendent in attendance.

We set up the tables with a tablecloth, napkins, cups, grape juice, flatbread and some herbs (not bitter!) in olive oil. I also brought a "basin" and a pitcher and towels. With the five of us sitting around the table, I proceeded to walk through the Passion Week chronology, specifically the steps of the Passover meal.

It was thought-provoking for all of us. At first, nearly everyone resisted the idea of my washing their feet and we realized this might have been how the disciples felt. The teenager was interested in hearing that Jesus was in control of events (through God, of course) and not merely a victim. They all liked hearing about the significance of the meal relative to Moses and the Israelite slaves, and the passing over of the plague, and making those connections with the Jewish traditions in Jesus' time. We puzzled over the reason why the disciples "didn't get it" --about Judas and his betrayal. We're looking forward to investigating what happened after the resurrection and in the following 40 days.

I printed out several Bible verses and everyone has one to memorize; we plan to discuss them in class next week. My daughter is using hers as the 'grace' we say before supper this week and she reviews it in the morning before school.

Finally, as proof of the benefit of teaching the Bible in a more hands-on way, I want to share this small indication that the lesson is having a continuing effect: this morning while eating breakfast, my younger daughter asked (out of the blue), "Why didn't Judas know he was the betrayer if he dipped his bread right after Jesus?" I'm so glad to know that our Sunday School activity is raising questions in her 4th grade mind two days after our "Passover" meal. She's "turning on" to the Bible! Yippee!

Amy Julian Gainesville, FL