On Tuesday morning, Pope Francis was officially installed as the new head of the Roman Catholic Church. It is estimated that somewhere between 150,000 and 200,000 people showed up in St. Peter’s Square to witness this historic event. But probably the one thing that the media talked about the most was his form of transportation. Rather than the bullet proof glass enclosed popemobile, that has been used ever since the assassination attempt on Pope John Paul II in 1981, Pope Francis rode in an open air white Mercedes. At one point in the procession he ordered the driver to stop. He then climbed down, went over and kissed a severely disabled man in the crowd. He the blessed and kissed some babies, touching and shaking hands with others. The Vatican security forces were noticeably stressed by his actions, but the crowd loved it. And many have seen this as indicative of the kind of man he is and what we might expect from his reign as pontiff.
This Sunday, of course, we focus on another procession that occurred almost 2,000 years ago. Jesus rode in to Jerusalem on the back of a donkey. The crowd was delighted, lined his route with their cloaks, and waved palm branches before him. It was a great and glorious celebration. But it also was the beginning of a week that changed the world forever. By Friday, this prophet from Galilee would be hanging on a cross.
We will be celebrating Palm Sunday with the Cherub and the Chancel Choirs combined to sing. Pastor Beth is preaching. Her text is Luke 19:28-40, and her sermon title is “Even the Stones Will Shout!”
You are also invited to our Maundy Thursday Communion service. That will be at 6:30 in the evening on March 28th, in the sanctuary. At 1:00 the following day, we will have a Good Friday communion service in the chapel.
There will be a Children’s Easter party on Saturday, March 30th. There will be a magician, an egg hunt, crafts and treats. Preschool and elementary age children are invited, accompanied by an adult. Friends are welcome, of course.
Palm Sunday is also when we wrap up our giving form One Great Hour of Sharing. If you or your children have one of those “fish” offering boxes, bring it on Sunday.
Stay in One Peace,