Sharing Church, Being Church, Together
To give you a fuller experience of Sunday morning, I am including a prayer for you, the scripture reading, some hymns to think about and a devotion for your week. I will also make available my sermon available in print for anyone who wishes it or wishes to pass it on to a friend.
Here’s how we can pray together, before watching our live-stream or video message or at some point today, I invite you to pray this prayer…
Lord Jesus, we are a fickle people, quick to turn away. We are quick to flock to you when all is well, but we are prone to scatter when there is opposition or criticism. Too often we have kept silent before you, afraid to proclaim your praise. It is easy to join the crowd as you ride triumphantly into Jerusalem— singing our joys and expectations, dancing our hopes and dreams. It is far more difficult to stand by you as the crowd cries for your crucifixion. Forgive our weakness when we turn away. Strengthen us for the journey ahead as we relive your suffering and death, that we might stay beside you to the end. Give us the courage to shout our hosannas, not only today, but each and every day. Amen.
Scripture: John 11:12-19
Here is our scripture reading for today. As you feel led, perhaps spend some time meditating on God’s words for us today, and pray for God to speak into your heart as you hear his voice in this…
Jesus’ Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem
The next day the great crowd that had come to the festival heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem. So they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet him, shouting,
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord—
the King of Israel!”
Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it; as it is written:
“Do not be afraid, daughter of Zion.
Look, your king is coming,
sitting on a donkey’s colt!”
His disciples did not understand these things at first; but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things had been written of him and had been done to him. So the crowd that had been with him when he called Lazarus out of the tomb and raised him from the dead continued to testify. It was also because they heard that he had performed this sign that the crowd went to meet him. The Pharisees then said to one another, “You see, you can do nothing. Look, the world has gone after him!”
Hymns for you to ponder on:
Hosanna, Loud Hosanna
All Glory, Laud and Honour
Majesty, Worship His Majesty
We Have Heard a Joyful Sound
Devotion for this week:
(Inspired by Dr. Tori Smit, Regional Minister for Faith Formation within the PCC)
What if we could shout our Alleluias through the colour and witness of Easter butterflies, breaking forth into our neighbourhoods and spreading the Good News that Jesus is risen, He is risen indeed.
This is how it might happen.
I’m inviting each of you to colour or make any kind of butterfly you wish over the course of the week to be ‘launched’ on Easter morning. You have the whole week to do this assignment. You can have your butterflies to be as complicated or as simple as you wish – this should be a delight and not a chore.
If you wish, you can download a butterfly colouring sheet off of Google images (for yourself or a child you love), or a find a butterfly craft on Pinterest if you’re not sure what you want to do. Watered-down food colouring can be painted on round coffee filters, scrunched in the middle and held together with a clothes pin to make a colourful tie-dyed butterfly, butterflies made with tissue paper squares folded like a fan and twisted in the middle with pipe cleaners take only minutes to make. Use your imaginations!
Maybe you would invite your friends to make butterflies too, whether they go to your church or not. The more butterflies the better. Did you know a group of butterflies is called a kaleidoscope? We’re working towards a kaleidoscope of butterflies for Easter!
As you complete your artwork, send me a picture so we can post it on our website and on Facebook. If you are on Facebook, post your picture and tag St. Giles Presbyterian Church explaining that this is our message of hope and encouragement, our Alleluia.
Then, I would love for you to hang your butterflies in your front windows early in the morning on Easter day for all the world to see and hear their shouts of Alleluia. You may wish to create an Alleluia message to accompany your butterflies in your window display. If you are able to walk through your neighbourhood, go explore and see if others have Easter Alleluia messages in their windows too. Send us pictures of that too!
Eastertide is season that goes on for 50 days until Pentecost Sunday. There’s lots of time and opportunity to share our Alleluia butterflies with the world.
Then, if you take your butterflies down, save all of your butterflies in a safe place until you are able to come together for worship in our church building once again. Then bring your butterflies to the church that first Sunday back. We will collect all of the butterflies as everyone comes into worship and will hang them in our sanctuary in a special and meaningful way. We will celebrate the Alleluias of Easter together on that day; celebrating that Christ is risen, He is risen indeed. Alleluia!
JOIN US FOR COMMUNION!
On Sunday, April 6 right after our live-streamed message on Facebook you are invited to join us in ‘virtual communion’. Grab some bread (could be crackers or cookies or your morning toast) and juice (could be wine, water or your morning coffee) and join us! In the body of your email you will find a link to a Zoom meeting that you can join on your computer, tablet or phone. Click on the link or phone in and we can see and hear each other as we share the joy of the Lord’s Feast together. We will start at 10:45, but I’ll be online by 10:30 to help you with the technology. If you have questions about this, please don’t hesitate to call me.
Be safe, be well, be faithful. You are be-loved.
– Pastor Cherie