Palm/Passion Sunday – March 25, 2018

firstpr0 FPCU Worship

Bible Study – 8:15 a.m.
Worship – 9:30 a.m.
Childcare is available for infants through preschool age, downstairs in Rooms 4 and 5 for morning service
Sunday School for Children and Youth – after worship
New Member Class – 11:00 a.m.
Seminar: “Reformation Roots: The English Reformation” – 11:00 a.m.

From the Pastor/Head of Staff

“Christ’s Entry Into Jerusalem,” by Wilhelm Morgner at the Museum Ostwall in Dortmund, Germany.

Sunday will be Palm/Passion Sunday. Since at least the 1990s, churches have begun to celebrate the day in this dual way, recognizing that most folks do not take part in Maundy Thursday nor Good Friday services. The result was an experience of celebration on Palm Sunday, followed by another, a great day of celebration on Easter Sunday, without the faithful sadness, bitter betrayal, suffering and death of Maundy Thursday and Good Friday. So on Sunday, you will notice a dramatic shift in the service. We will gather in the Narthex (we hope; the forecast looks very snowy) to celebrate the Liturgy of the Palms. We will process into the sanctuary singing the first hymn, and then move into the Liturgy of the Passion. It’s a lot to combine in one service, Lord knows. That’s one reason I love the work of art accompanying this. “Christ’s Entry Into Jerusalem, by Wilhelm Morgner, captures the confusion the disciples must have felt that day, and during Holy Week. Great joy, mixed with foreboding. Events moving way too fast. Danger from Jewish and Roman authorities every present. Where is Jesus in the painting? On the donkey, in all of his humble, fragile humanity? But there is no halo. Or is Jesus the black figure in the center, the one with the halo, the one appearing to walk into the darkness crowding in from the edges? His uncreated light still shines from his center, but the darkness of death presses in, showing already in his form. Join us on Sunday as we continue the journey with Jesus.

Blessings, David

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Please Give to One Great Hour of Sharing (OGHS): Isaiah 58 describes a new kind of fast, not to give up bread but to share it. Isaiah calls us to “loose the bonds of injustice,” to “let the oppressed go free,” to “share bread with the hungry” and to “invite the homeless poor into our homes.” We are called to offer help to those in need and restoration to those who have been broken down. One way we answer this call is through our gifts to One Great Hour of Sharing. This annual offering supports many important assistance efforts around the world and is a very significant support of general world mission for our church. Presbyterian Church USA uses the OGHS funds to support Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, The Presbyterian Hunger Program, and Self-Development of People. A gift to One Great Hour of Sharing enables the church to share God’s love with our neighbors-in-need around the world by providing relief to those affected by natural disasters, provide food to the hungry, and helping to empower the poor and oppressed.

We will receive and dedication the OGHS offering this Sunday. There are many quick and easy ways to give your donation to OGHS—use one of the OGHS pew envelopes, write a check with OGHS in the note line, or use our online donation link at firstpresurbana.org. Please support the work of the risen Christ in our world with your generous donation!