Palm Sunday

Theme: A people of the Temple follow Christ in the way of suffering love

Psalm 122:1-4
(excerpted; fresh translation)

A song for people on pilgrimage to Jerusalem:

How happy I was when they said to me:
“Come with us to the house of God!”
And now here we are, Jerusalem,
standing inside your gates!

Here is where the tribes—God’s people—
come to give him thanks,
in keeping with the law he gave to Israel.

Mark 11:1-11
(excerpted; fresh translation)

As they approached Jerusalem,
they came to Bethany, near the Mount of Olives.
Two of Jesus’s disciples brought a colt to him, and he sat on it.
Many people spread their cloaks on the road in front of him,
or laid down branches cut from the fields.

People paraded before and after him, shouting:
“Hosanna! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!”

He entered Jerusalem and went to the temple.
By the time he had looked around at everything, it was late,
so he returned to Bethany to spend the night.

Reflection:

Jesus spends the last few days of his life in Jerusalem, as a pilgrim. He arrives as one of many, many pilgrims who have traveled to Jerusalem, in some cases from distant countries, to celebrate the Passover. More specifically, the pilgrims’ destination is the Temple, where the lamb for the Passover meal is to be sacrificed.

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Photo by beloy

Jesus—

On this Palm Sunday,
I imagine that I am part of the parade accompanying you into Jerusalem.
We are a large crowd.
You are up ahead of me, riding on the colt.
As I follow, I catch glimpses of the back of your head.

I wave my palm branch and shout with the rest:
“Hosanna! Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!”

We are parading into Jerusalem.
We are ascending the slope up to the Temple Mount.
We are following you to the house of God—
which is your house, for you are God with us.
You accompany us on our pilgrimage,
and you are the destination of our pilgrimage.

I am following Jesus up the mount toward the Temple in Jerusalem.
I am following Jesus up the hill that leads to the Kirtland Temple.
I am following Jesus up the hill that leads to the Temple at Independence.
I am following Jesus up the Worshiper’s Path that leads into the sanctuary of the Independence Temple.

I wave my palm branch and shout the words used at the dedication of the Kirtland Temple:
“Hosanna! Hosanna! To God and the Lamb! Amen and amen!”

About this Lenten reflection

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