Well, over the years, the church recognized that many faithful members would attend Palm Sunday, then skip to Easter without attending either of the Holy Week services (Maundy Thursday and Good Friday). So that meant many members were missing the crucifixion of Jesus. They celebrated on Palm Sunday, then celebrated on Easter. But they missed the cross. They missed the death of Jesus on that cross. So the church decided to have this Sunday be Palm/Passion Sunday.
At Elim this year we open with a few of our members marching down Stanley Street with our palms (and really! they are Elim’s palms!) waving as we make our way into the sanctuary. We hear the Gospel of Jesus entering Jerusalem, with the people calling out their Hosannas!
As we move further into worship, we hear the story of the Passion of Christ – which includes his death on the cross. We sing hymns which are interspersed throughout the Gospel readings. There is no sermon. We allow the Word of God and the hymns to move our hearts and minds as we reflect on Jesus’ suffering. We ourselves are making our way to the cross.
So we begin with our “Hosannas”, and end with the crucifixion – Jesus giving his life for the whole world.
After this Sunday, we enter Holy Week, thirsty for the completion of God’s astonishing work. I encourage you to attend our Maundy Thursday Zoom worship with Marin Lutheran and our Good Friday worship.
See you in worship,