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Thoughts on Holy Week

Here is my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen, in whom my soul delights; I have put my spirit upon him; he will bring forth justice to the nations.Isaiah 42:1

The streets were quiet this morning. I suspect this has a lot to do with it being Spring Break. Families have either gone away on vacation, or even if they’re staying home, there isn’t the rush on Monday morning to get the kids to school on time. So the roads, while not empty, were certainly calmer. It makes for an more introspective start to an earlier-than-usual Holy Week.

I thought this week, it might be an idea to share with you something from yesterday’s Sunday School lesson. It provides a section of the Holy Week story point and some questions, that while primarily intended for our children, is a fantastic daily exercise for the coming week. The entire story is Luke 22:7 to 23:56 if you wish to read the whole passage. Each day has a different set of verses for the story, a focus verse that is associated with that is just before or just after that story, followed some questions that you might wish to reflect on.

Monday: Dispute

  • Story: Luke 22:7-23: Jesus eats the last supper with disciples.
  • Focus verses: “A dispute also arose among them as to which one of them was to be regarded as greatest.” – Jesus replied, “The greatest among you must become like the youngest, and the lender like one who serves.” (Luke 22:24,26b)
  • Questions: What are some “disputes” in your life that might keep you from following Jesus this week? What acts of service might you offer during Holy Week?

Tuesday: Let Go

  • Story: Luke 22:39-46: Jesus prays in the garden
  • Focus Verse: “When I sent you without a purse, bag, or sandals, did you lack anything?” (Luke 22:35)
  • Question: What might you need to let go of in order to follow Jesus this week?

Wednesday: Sign

  • Story: Luke 22:47-53: Jesus is arrested
  • Focus Verses: “When Herod saw Jesus, he was very glad… because he had heard about him and was hoping to see him perform some sign.” (Luke 23:8)
  • Questions: What do you hope Jesus would do for you? What might Jesus hope to do through you this week?

Thursday: Weep

  • Story: Luke 23:13-25: Jesus is judged to die
  • Focus Verse: “Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for me, but weep for yourselves and your children.” (Luke 23:28)
  • Questions: What causes you the most grief in the stories of Jesus’ last week in Jerusalem? Why?

Friday: Remember

  • Luke 23:32-34: Jesus is Crucified
  • Focus Verses: “Jesus, remember me, when you come into your kingdom.” – “Today you will be with me in Paradise.” (Luke 23:42, 43)
  • Question: What are some of the things you want to remember as you reflect on Holy Week?

Saturday: Jesus

  • Story: Luke 23:50-56
  • Focus Verses: “The Centurion… praised God and said, “Certainly this man was innocent.” (Luke 23:47)
  • Question: If you could say only one thing about Jesus at the end of this week, what would you say?”

 

I hope you find these questions helpful for the coming week. Please join us for our Good Friday service at 10:30am on Friday morning, followed by our celebration on Easter Sunday at 10:30am. Both services will feature numerous musical offerings from the choir to draw us into the mood of the day. Our worship service on Easter Sunday will of course include our closing benediction of Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus, and in the service a special musical solo offering from Calgary Opera’s Laura Brandt.

Have a blessed Holy Week.

John

Upcoming Events

  • Good Friday: March 25th, 10:30am
    • Our Good Friday service features the recounting of road to the cross from the Gospel of John, several musical offerings from the choir, as well as the Solemn Reproaches of the Cross.
  • Easter Sunday: March 27th, 10:30am
    • Music and Fanfare on the Holiest day of the Christian Calendar. As mentioned earlier, we will be celebrating the Resurrection with lots of music, telling the story of the resurrection from the Gospel of Luke, and the Sacrament of Communion.
  • The Dead Sea Scrolls Seminar
    • In cooperation with the Calgary Association of Lifelong Learners (CALL), I will be offering a short course/seminar on the Dead Sea Scrolls. I have now confirmed a start date of Monday May 9th, and it will run for 5-6 sessions on Mondays from 7:15 to about 9pm.
  • Congregational Membership Classes
    • If you or someone you know would like to formalize membership with St. Matthew’s, I am hoping to run a membership class in the next few months. If you are interested, please email me, call me at the church, or speak with me directly on Sunday mornings.

Church Office Hours

Wendy’s regular office hours are Mondays, 11am-3pm, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Friday from 9am-3pm. During Holy Week itself, the office will be closed on Good Friday, as well as Easter Monday.

My regular office hours are Sunday through Thursdays from 9:00 to 12:30. While I am likely to be in the office in the afternoons Monday through Thursday, I may also be out on pastorals visits or meetings.

 

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