“To thee, before thy passion,
they sang their hymns of praise;
to thee, now high exalted,
our melody we raise.”
– All Glory, Laud, and Honor, Theodulph of Orleans, 9th Century
Translation by John Mason Neale
The Palm Sunday service we celebrate tomorrow is, in my opinion, Lent’s emotional rollercoaster. We’re asked to take a break from our Lenten seriousness – to raise our voices in song and to reenact Jesus’ parade into Jerusalem. Then, we conclude the service by listening to The Passion and are abruptly reminded that the party’s over; the human betrayal and crucifixion await. Talk about conflicting emotions!
The service juxtaposes the human spectrum, showing us the good, the bad, and the ugly. Thankfully and mercifully, the result is Christ’s resurrection. So while we “peak and valley” in the matter of an hour on Sunday morning, let’s participate in all emotions fully, for that is what we are called to do.
Palm Sunday gives us the opportunity to grow deeper in our spiritual journey and human experience – and to accept the good, the bad, and the ugly. Our relationship with God is not perfect in our eyes, but it is perfect in God’s eyes. By singing wholeheartedly and mourning contemplatively we are challenged to experience all the feelings and facets of Lent.
– Sara McGanity