Pray: Begin by making the sign of the cross and calling upon God's name.
From God to us, from death to life, from me to you …
in the name of the Father, and of the Son + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
O God, as Holy Week begins, we ask you to be with us. Help us to understand all that Jesus did for us, even to giving his very life. Thank you for your love, and for never giving up on us. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
Listen: Pay close attention as these verses from the Bible are read aloud.
Pilate called together the chief priests, the leaders, and the people. He told them, “You brought Jesus to me and said he was a troublemaker. But I have questioned him here in front of you, and I have not found him guilty of anything that you say he has done. Herod didn’t find him guilty either and sent him back. This man doesn’t deserve to be put to death! I will just have him beaten with a whip and set free.”
But the whole crowd shouted, “Kill Jesus! Give us Barabbas!” Now Barabbas was in jail because he had started a riot in the city and had murdered someone. Pilate wanted to set Jesus free, so he spoke again to the crowds. But they kept shouting, “Nail him to a cross! Nail him to a cross!”
Pilate spoke to them a third time, “But what crime has he done? I have not found him guilty of anything for which he should be put to death. I will have him beaten with a whip and set free.” The people kept on shouting as loud as they could for Jesus to be put to death. Finally, Pilate gave in. He freed the man who was in jail for rioting and murder, because he was the one the crowd wanted to be set free. Then Pilate handed Jesus over for them to do what they wanted with him. (CEV)
Engage: Talk about the Bible by having parents respond to children’s questions.
Child: What is a “troublemaker?” Does that word describe Jesus? Why or why not?
Child: Have you or someone you love ever been labeled unfairly? How can it help to know that the same thing happened to Jesus?
Affirm: Pray for God to put his Word into action in your daily life.
Heavenly Father, you sent your Son to save us from our sin. May we never take this for granted, and may we turn to him when we face our own trials and griefs. For no one understands suffering more than he does. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
Have each person in the family bless one another with these words:
May you remember that God is with you always! Amen.