Tomorrow is Palm Sunday, a strange moment in our Lenten pilgrimage when we are invited to both praise and brace ourselves at the same time.
I am repeatedly struck this past year how the Scriptures are vividly leaping to life in the midst of our current experience, and this dual experience of joyful hope and apprehension feels extraordinarily current.
It's good that we bring this into our worship, lay it before God intentionally, let all be caught up in our Great Thanksgiving.
There are palm crosses that you can collect from both churches today - 10.30-11.30 at St Luke's. This afternoon I will be at St Margaret's from 2pm doing some tidying and cleaning for a couple of hours, you are welcome to pop by then and pick up a cross.
There will also be some crosses left outside of the churches over the weekend so you can pick one up as you pass by.
You may also want to bring your own version of palms to your worship space at home tomorrow as you join the service.
Last year, we used the palm prayer, and we will be revisiting that this year, so maybe if you have children (or indeed if it works for you too), you could prepare paper palms by tracing your hands and cutting them out, decorating them if you're feeling fancy!
This is a great article that you might want to read in preparation for the service, it outlines the history behind palm sunday and explains 'why palm branches?'.
Do have a look at the whole, but if you are in a rush, it's at the least worth taking this on board:
Palm branches were regarded as tokens of joy and triumph and were customarily used on festive occasions (Leviticus 23:40, Nehemiah 8:15). Kings and conquerors were welcomed with palm branches being strewn before them and waved in the air. Victors of Grecian games returned to their homes triumphantly waving palm branches in their hands.
For those who enjoy incorporating some signing into their worship, this is a very simple sign to learn for tomorrow: Hosanna
see you tomorrow. Louise