Palm Sunday

My eight year old turned to me and said, “I always get Black Friday and Good Friday mixed up.” I told her that I understand. It seems like there’s really nothing Good about Good Friday. And it seems exceptionally dark, which is why many Protestants prefer to just skip over it. So why does our church host the Community Good Friday service every single year? Why do we sing the hymns about the cross and stop before we sing the last verses where he rose up from the grave? Why do we tell the hard part of the story and call it Good rather than Black?

Have you ever felt alone? Have you ever felt the deep darkness of living? Have you ever gone to the valley or to the depths and felt the dark night(s) of the soul? Have you ever been rejected by those you love? We call Friday Good because not only are we redeemed through Jesus’ sacrifice, but we are also reminded that God in human form suffered as we do and knows what it is to be completely human, not only in its joys but also in its sorrows. “Jesus walked this lonesome valley - he had to walk it by himself” so the song goes. But from here on out none of us ever has to walk that valley alone ever again. And this is good. We go to the cross every year to be reminded that God’s love is for us and with us. God knows and understands. God does not leave us alone. And we are redeemed from the blackest of Fridays forevermore.

So join us this week for all of the remembrances and let Jesus meet you on your journey from faithful following and the mandate to love, into betrayal and rejection and suffering and then, finally, into new life. Allow Jesus to find you and redeem you this week.


I hope to see you throughout the week as we remember the story of Jesus’ walk to the cross and hear our own invitation to discipleship.

Grace and Peace.

Pastor Katie

 

Upcoming Events

Sunday, 4/10:

9:00 a.m.: Children's Sunday School for Lent

9:00 a.m.: Witness at the Cross Lenten Study

9:00 a.m.: Chancel Choir

10:30 a.m.: Worship Service


Monday, 4/11:

11:00 a.m.: Witness at the Cross Lenten Study via Zoom


Tuesday, 4/12:

6:00 p.m.: Handbell Rehearsal

4:00 p.m.: Session Meeting


Thursday, 4/14:

7:00 p.m.: Maundy Thursday Communion Service


Friday, 4/15:

Noon: Community Good Friday Service at FPC Tiffin


Sunday, 4/17:

10:30 a.m.: Easter Sunday Worship with Holy Communion

 

Even the Stones Will Cry Out

by Rev. Sarah Speed

The Pharisees found Jesus;

they said,

“Order your disciples to stop.”

It’s not the first time

justice was almost

silenced. People stood on the

sidelines shouting hosanna

which means, “Save us,”

“Save me.”

It’s not the first time we’ve

heard that cry from the street.

The Pharisees said

stop. They wanted the people

quiet, but some things can’t be

silenced.

Justice will bubble up,

hope will raise its head,

love will rise to the surface.

Hate and fear will try to

drown them out,

but you cannot silence

what was here first,

which was love,

and it was good.

It was so good.

So even the stones will cry out.

Remember that

at your parade.

Justice will bubble up,

hope will raise its head,

love will rise to the surface.

Amen.


 

Even the Stones Cry Out

by Rev. Lauren Wright Pittman |Inspired by Luke 19:28-40

When I began this image, I wanted the medium to be the message. Initially I thought I might make a mosaic of stones, however, I was wisely encouraged by my colleagues to try photography and digital collage. I went out into my side yard and picked up rocks to take pictures of them. As I quickly scanned for interesting rocks, I was underwhelmed by what I was seeing. I had already decided that the rocks were going to be dull and boring. My color enthusiast self was annoyed by the prospect of dusty neutral tones and minimal contrast.


This was an interesting place to begin my process, considering the text I was working with. I was definitely underestimating what the rocks would have to offer the piece, and was preemptively disappointed about the mundane color schemes and textures I would have to work with from my photographs. Gosh, was I wrong. As I downloaded the images and began to edit them, a wide spectrum of color came into view. Most of the hues were entirely shocking and unexpected: periwinkle, magenta, turquoise, mauve, rust, orange, gold, and plum, just to name a few. It was as if God was saying to me, “See, even if you turn a blind eye, and your assumptions distract you, the stones will cry out.”

In this piece there are three stones bordered in gold to reference the voice of God, the truth that will not be quelled. Down the sides of the image are the Pharisees or the “silencers” in postures of quieting judgment. My hope was for the silencers to be completely visually enveloped and drowned out by the stones. I left the silencers simplified and unfinished to signify that their attempts at diminishing the truth would ultimately and always be in vain.

—Rev. Lauren Wright Pittman