“A man is like a novel: until the very last page you don’t know how it will end. Otherwise it wouldn’t be worth reading.”
Would you skip reading a book and just read the last page? When you buy tickets to a concert or a play, do you just show up for the end? Would you just go to the last fifteen minutes of a movie? If your answer is no, then I have to ask “Why would you just go to church on Easter Sunday instead of experiencing all of Holy Week?”
This is the question Rev. Linda McDermott asked a couple of years ago at a staff planning meeting for Lent and it has forever changed the way I look at Easter. Don’t get me wrong, celebrating the rise of Jesus from the dead on Easter Sunday and the forgiveness, rebirth, and God’s saving grace that it represents is pretty amazing and incredibly meaningful. But, if that’s all you do, you’re honestly missing an opportunity for something even more amazing and meaningful. (Trust me on this!)
So with that in mind, I invite everyone to join me and observe not just Easter Sunday, but to begin your Easter celebration by experiencing all of Holy Week, a time of somber reflection that begins on Palm Sunday and walks through the events preceding Jesus’ death. Celebrating Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter gives you the opportunity to experience the triumphant entry of Jesus into Jerusalem; his betrayal by Judas; his Last Supper with his twelve apostles; his arrest, crucifixion and death; and his burial in a tomb, before experiencing once again the glory of his resurrection.
So this year, don’t just “read the last page.” Give yourself and your family the opportunity to enjoy the whole book — I promise you, the chapters leading up to the last page are what will make the ending even more spectacular!
See you Palm Sunday!
Director of Welcoming Ministries