A Walk Through Holy Week
We are rapidly approaching the most holy week of the Christian year. The journey began on Ash Wednesday with the imposition of the ashes and it has taken a meandering path through a transfiguration, then healings and teachings, and finally in about three weeks it will find us in Jerusalem for the last week of Jesus’ life in the flesh. That last week is the most significant part of the journey, because everything it contains leads to the cross of Good Friday and the empty tomb of Easter Sunday.
It is worth noting that time and the series of events in the story of Jesus Christ vary somewhat between the gospels, and that they each take just a few chapters to cover the years from his birth through his three-year-long ministry. However, time in the last week of his life in the flesh slows down and the events almost match across all three gospels. It is as if scripture is saying that while it is all important, this part is especially important. It all comes to its point here, and each of us needs to be part of it. Each of us needs to pay attention.
On Sunday, April 14, we celebrate the day Jesus entered into town while the crowd of people lining the road cheered. They needed a king and they wanted it to be him. They needed him to galvanize them in revolt against Roman persecution. He was coming to free them from ultimate slavery to anything that might harm or destroy. We will gather in worship that day to the sound of the celebration which anticipates all that will come in the following days.
Thursday evening at 6:00 the church family will gather in the Fellowship Hall for the Agape Feast. This is the Early Christian celebration of the Eucharist. The community gathers for a meal together, everyone bringing something for the table. The food we bring is much like what would have been shared in the First Century: breads, dried fruit, nuts, cheese, etc. After the meal we celebrate the Last Supper before moving to the lawn in front of the sanctuary to hear the words of Jesus as he prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane. We will then go into the sanctuary where we will read the words of the 22nd Psalm, which contains Jesus words from the cross, while the room is stripped of all decoration.
Friday evening we gather in the sanctuary at 6:00 for the readings of the Stations of the Cross. This is the Passion narrative read from parts of all the gospels. The service ends in darkness and silence as all begin the wait for the glory of Easter Sunday morning.
We will gather at 7:00 am Sunday in the area behind the Fellowship Hall to greet the rising sun of Easter Day…and the celebration begins. Breakfast in the Fellowship Hall will follow the service. Then at 11:00 am is the main celebration of the day as we witness the completion of what was begun at Christmas.
Come and let us share every part of this journey together.