Thursday, April 5, 2012

Our 4th Annual Lenten Tea on Holy Thursday

I really wasn't sure if we would be able to have our Lenten Teas (originally inspired by Alice at Cottage Blessings) this year, but my children insisted. These have become very much loved traditions in our home over the past 4 years and they said they would do whatever they could to help with the tea.   My three oldest set the table, helped prepare the food, began setting up their own Holy Week decorations, and even dyed some toothpicks to place in our crown of thorns "at least for the Triduum," since I never did have a chance to do so during Lent.

I know I put together a long post filled with pictures every year, and the idea doesn't change, but I do love to be able to look back and notice the little variations from year to year, as well as see pictures of our ever growing family!  So, here are some pictures from this year's Lenten Tea on Holy Thursday:

~ Palm on the Road ~

My kids really aren't very picky, but for some reason only one of them likes Hearts of Palm.   Instead of opening a new jar just for him and I, I decided to skip this item this year and read our new Palm Sunday picture book at the beginning of our tea, after we prayed.   I ended up deciding on Little Colt's Palm Sunday.   This large hardcover book was a steal at just $5.98 and is as sweet as can be with it's rhyming text. Very sweet.  Twinkle Toes has already re-read it to Rose a few times.  

"And many spread their garments on the road, and others spread leafy branches which they had cut from the fields." Mk. 11:8

~ Costly Oil ~

Last year I pulled out my favorite Basil Flavored Olive Oil from Annie's Naturals.  This year I've been loving the Roasted Garlic (drizzled over popcorn!) flavor.  Both are outstanding! These paired nicely with the unleavened bread.

"And truly, I say to you, wherever the gospel is preached in the whole world, what she has done will be told in memory of her." Mk. 14:9

~ Thirty Pieces of Silver ~

I served 30 rice crackers once again, without the cheese this year.

"Then one of the twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, 'What will you give me if I deliver him to you?' And they paid him thirty pieces of silver." Mt. 25: 14-15

~ Unleavened Bread ~

In the past we usually use Pita Bread cut into wedges, but this year we made Lisa's Unleavened Bread Recipe! I somehow managed to overcook it and burn the edges, but the kids loved this bread!  I didn't try any myself, since I am still avoiding all dairy.

"And on the first day of Unleavened Bread, when they sacrificed the passover lamb, his disciples said to Him, 'Where will you have us go and prepare for you to eat the passover?'" Mk. 14:12

~ The Mount of Olives ~

I didn't have any black olives in the cupboard, but I did find a jar of Green Olives double stuffed with Garlic and Jalapenos!  Almost all of my children like these (though not quite as much as black olives) and the garlic cloves were a perfect addition, as they continue to recover from being sick.

"And when they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives." Mk. 14:26

~ The Cock Crows Twice ~

Alice suggests two mini chicken sandwiches for this menu item.  In the past I have also made Chicken Wraps, and even Roasted Chicken Soup.   My kids asked if we could have the Marie Calendar Chicken Pot Pies that were in the freezer and I thought that was a great idea.   Captain baked one for each person, and commented on the fact that "they even came in green bowls!"   (We always try to incorporate the color green when possible since Holy Thursday is also known as Green Thursday.) 

"And Jesus said to him, 'Truly, I say to you, this very night, before the cock crows twice, you will deny me three times.'" Mk. 14:30

~ Gethsemane Figs ~

Just one little Fig Newton each, representing Gethsemane Figs. 

"And they went to a place which was called Gethsemane; and he said to his disciples, 'Sit here, while I pray.'" Mk. 14:32

~ Sleepy Apostles ~ 

When Jennifer left a comment this morning on last year's post, mentioning that she had just had this tea with her children for lunch and that the only thing she added was "Sleepytime Tea for the sleepy apostles" I knew we had to add it to our tea as well!  It's a perfect addition! Thank you Jennifer!

"And he came and found them sleeping, and he said to Peter, "Simon, are you asleep?  Could you not watch one hour?" Mk. 14:37

~ Judas' Kiss ~

Since my children all gave up candy this Lent, we went back to using Strawberries (instead of Hershey Kisses) to represent Judas' Kiss. 

"And when he came, he went up to him at once, and said, 'Master!' And he kissed him." Mk. 14:45

~ The Clouds of Heaven ~

A little cloud of whip cream for with the Strawberries.

"And Jesus said, 'I am; and you will see the Son of man seated at the right hand of Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven.'" Mk. 14:62

~ Peter's Tears ~

In the past we have used  either Tic-Tacs and Altoids, but since these are considered candy in our home we used some dry roasted and salted pepitos, shaped like little salty tear drops - inspired by Blair's recent Lenten Tea

"And immediately the cock crowed a second time. And Peter remembered how Jesus had said to him, 'Before the cock crows twice, you will deny me three times.' And he broke down and wept." Mk. 14:72

This meal really is pretty simple to prepare and my children were such a huge help!   We sat down to lunch, prayed, and read the bible versus while passing around the food.   The kids were really wishing that their Daddy could be home to join us, but happy that we have our little Bud this year.  The older boys recalled how it was last Easter Sunday when they found out that they would have another baby brother or sister, and this year they just can't imagine life without our cute little guy! 

Just as I finished reading two dear friends rang the doorbell.   One was delivering groceries for our Easter dinner (along with a few new recipes to try out as well!) and the other came along and also brought her children's old beginning piano books to pass on to our children now that they are taking piano lessons.    Neither of them had been to our home in years and they were able to stay a couple hours.  It was so nice to visit! 

*We've been using the same small card stock signs for the past few years.   You can still download my document over at Scribd

I hope you all had a very blessed Holy Thursday!


  1. well done again. next time we chat i'll tell you all about teh wonderful organic conversation me and the kids had yesterday about teh events of Holy week. I think they will be ready for the symbolism in this tea next year. Happy Triduum and Easter. Hope the kids are feeling better. So glad hubby will be home soon.

  2. Isn't it amazing how quickly the new little ones become such a part of our lives? It's like they were always there. I'm due next month and it's fun to think that this time next year we will have an almost-one-year old around for Easter. :)

  3. We might do that unleavened bread instead of pretzels looks easier, and I"m all about easier this year!!

    I like the idea of the chicken pot pies too, my kids love those and I rarely get them!

    Great job again Jessica!! I'm skipping it this year. I must have gotten gluten somehow yesterday because my Simeon was such a fuss bucket all day, not one nap!!

  4. Beautiful, Jessica. Peace, love, and prayers, Annita +JMJ+

  5. What a very special mother you are!

  6. I love this! Bookmarking for next year (it's already Holy Saturday here in Japan!). :o)

  7. Thank you for sharing these wonderful ideas. Your kids are so blessed to have a Mom like you!

  8. Beautiful, and I am honored to have given YOU an idea! LOL. The only drawback to the sleeptime tea was that I was the only one who got sleepy! Have a very blessed and happy Easter with those lovely children. They are just so precious!

  9. Happy Easter Jessica!! We were able to do the lenten tea on Good Friday and it was a blessing, thank you for sharing all this great ideas!!

  10. So many good ideas! I've altered our Thursday menu because of some of your suggestions - will be serving chicken instead of lamb chops, and incorporating the fig newtons, olives and hershey kisses!


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