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Worship Preview - April 2, 2023 Holy Week Begins!

Press Release: for April 1, 2023 edition.

First United Methodist Church

This Weekend: Sunday at 10:30am “Hossana? Hossana!

Scriptures: John 12:1-36; Psalm 118:1-2, 19-29; and Isaiah 50:4-9a – with Rev. Christopher Eshelman preaching.

Palm Sunday is one of the high points of the Christian year! Who doesn’t love a parade? We love to shout “Hosanna!” with the joyful crowd. This week we will depart from the lectionary reading and instead stay with the Gospel of John’s account. We will read the story, alluded to last week, of Lazarus’ sister Mary anointing Jesus’ feet with a pound of nard and then hear John’s account of the procession into Jerusalem. John makes it clear that those processing with Jesus waving palms are those who witnessed the resurrection of Lazarus. Jesus enacts the prophetic word of Zechariah 9:9 – Jesus rebukes the warrior king model and instead enters on a donkey’s colt .

Who is this Jesus? What has he come to do? John’s account makes clear the provocative nature of Jesus’ entrance and the way Jesus has rooted his actions in the words of the law and the prophets. As we enter into the holiest week of the Christian calendar, we will ponder the meaning of Hosanna. It has become thought of as a cry of celebration, but it literally means “save us!” Jesus knows the path he follows to do so. We, this day, know the stories – do we observe them as bystanders? Do we plot and scheme? Or do we enter into them as true disciples, willing to offer our best, willing follow Christ through death to life. Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!

Upcoming Events:

Wednesday, April 5, 5:30pm Feeding Families in His Name– this weekly free meal is available to everyone without obligation. A “to-go” meal is distributed under the portico at 301 S. National. We are thankful for all the volunteers from other area churches and community groups that make this meal possible each week.

7:00pm Thursday, April 6– Maundy Thursday –a special service of remembrance and Holy Communion

7:00pm Friday, April 7– Tenebrae/Good Friday – a service of darkness that prepares us to truly experience the empty tomb.

10:30am Sunday, April 9– EASTER! Christ is Risen, Indeed!

Easter is one of those times many of us feel drawn to church, even if we haven’t been regulars for a long time, or perhaps never been. Are you feeling a little hollow? Let’s find hope together this year! No matter where you are on your own journey of faith, you are invited to join in worship and celebration at 10:30am at 301 S. National, coming just as you are, with your questions, doubts, and hopes - and to experience the transformative, healing love and grace of Christ - which makes us whole. Visit for more information on what to expect.



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