The only church in the west metro area to organize such an event, Lyndale Lutheran Church in Maple Plain is set to hold its third annual Narration of the Last Supper on Thursday, March 24. According to church staff, the event seeks to both educate and connect attendees with the biblical account of the Last Supper.
“People who have left have said things like, ‘It was a really intimate experience,’” said Pastor Gale Reitan. “It feels like you’re right there.”
Starting at 7 p.m., the production lasts just short of an hour, and involves a number of church members, acting out the scene on stage. Though the event has been held only twice before at the church, Reitan said that the service had roots dating back over six decades.
“The service that we do is taken from a Presbyterian pastor’s work in 1954,” said Reitan. “We try to make it as authentic as we can to the period.”
Some of those efforts toward biblical authenticity come from the music provided during the service by Christian Nielsen. His mandolin and Native American flute serve as an auditory backdrop for the story unfolding on stage.
“It’s almost therapeutic music,” said Stephanie Addicks, secretary at the church. “It’s very thought-provoking, almost somber, because it’s leading up to the crucifixion of Jesus…His music, I would say, is very haunting.”
According to Addicks and Reitan, the service has drawn about 100 attendees in past years. The story might be familiar to many who attend, but they said that the service has its share of tension and suspense.
“The performance is based upon the moment when Jesus informs the disciples that one of them will betray him,” said Addicks. “The question that each disciple ends with is, ‘Is it I?’ because they’re really wondering, ‘Will I betray Jesus? Am I going to be the one?’”
The service is appropriate for all ages, and Reitan said that everyone is welcome to attend.
“It’s great for children, too, because there’s so much action that the children are captivated,” said Reitan. “There’s an opening drama in the marketplace, where [Jesus] clears the marketplace and knocks down the tables.”
The event is free to the public. Lyndale Lutheran Church is located at 8012 County Road 6, on the corner of County Road 92.
For more information about the service, call (763) 479-1719.
Contact Sean Miner at [email protected]