Today we enter into Holy Week with what’s often called Palm/Passion Sunday. Holy Week, in its entirety, begins on Palm Sunday as we remember Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem. Maundy Thursday commemorates the Last Supper and the giving of a new commandment. The word “maundy” comes from the Latin word for “mandate” and Jesus gives a new mandate to “love one another as I have loved you.” On Good Friday we traverse the desolation and despair of the crucifixion and on Easter morning we celebrate the risen Christ!

Because many of us don’t have the opportunity to make our way through all of the nuances of each day of Holy Week, the church often celebrates Palm/Passion Sunday on Palm Sunday to give people of faith an opportunity to experience the breadth and depth of the Holy Week story. Otherwise, if we check in only on Palm Sunday and Easter, we go straight from “Hosanna” to “Hallelujah” and miss so much of the critical journey in between.

For that reason, our service will be slightly different today as we celebrate Palm/Passion Sunday. We’ll begin with a Palm Sunday text and conclude with the reading of the Passion or the crucifixion. I invite you to let the Holy Week story percolate in you this week as we prepare ourselves for the glory of Easter morning!

Scripture passage: Mark 11:1-11, 15:1-39

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