The Sunday before Easter is traditionally referred to as “Palm Sunday.” We celebrate the triumphant entry into Jerusalem with palm branches and shouts of “hosanna!” In recent years, it has become more common to also remember the Passion of Jesus. By doing so, we walk with Jesus through all of Holy Week and end at the tomb. This gives us a real picture of the heights and depths of what occurred in that week. Our worship service is a hybrid of celebration and despair, joy and agony.
We start with the proclamation of Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem as described in Luke 19:28-40. As we sing “Hosanna, Loud Hosanna,” the congregation and choir enter and lay their palm branches at the front of the chancel. This act of praise is followed by Isaiah 50:4-9, Psalm 31, and Philippians 2:5-11. These texts help us to transition to the Proclamation of the Passion story from the Gospel of Luke which is found at Luke 22:14-23:56. The text is broken up into six movements separated by verses of hymns that complement the reading.
This was a good day at McFarland UMC. We ended our worship service with our first covered dish luncheon since COVID-19 began. Thank you to everyone who made this a special day all around.