Each Monday we publish Sunday's Coming, an email-only post on the upcoming readings, written by our current Living by the Word columnist.
Liturgy of the Palms: Psalm 118:1-2, 19-29; Matthew 21:1-11
Liturgy of the Passion: Isaiah 50:4-9a; Psalm 31:9-16; Philippians 2:5-11; Matthew 26:14-27:66 or Matthew 27:11-54
Perhaps you could say that in Rome, Paul,where the olive trees of the Seven Hillsstrung their pearls of rain against the sky.And yes, as I hike Glacier Parkwith a well-stocked pack, I can welcomeGod's ambassadors of fireweed and paintbrush,the psalmic rhythm of lake hitting shore.But as the refugee trudgesfrom Mogadishu to Dabaab, is she to catcha glimpse of antelope bone in the thicketand intuit the sufferings of the Son of Man?She wears her own nails and crown.An Eden of lizards surges at her heels,but she wonders at nothingbut the sore-studded daughter she left to dieon the road, and now, the babystrapped to her back: six poundsat one year old. He no longer criesbut flutters small breaths on her necklike the golden wings of mothsshe counts with worshipful attention.
Among other things, Holy Week always brings to mind the tension between thinking doctrinally about Christ and thinking historically about Jesus.
It is tempting to think of the Upper Room scene in the Gospels’
passion narratives as a dreamy, candle-lit fellowship meal rather than,
It was the zombies. Always the zombies.
Monday, the protesters of the Occupy Wall Street movement
channeled Michael Jackson in “Thriller,” dressing up like zombies,
complete with fake blood, stupefied stagger and an insatiable appetite
It was blatant political theater of the absurd.
Jesus might have dieda dozen times before he died.An incidental death—tetanusfrom a nail, a splinter.A baptismal drowning.A drink from a tainted well.Rotten fish.Desert thirst.A stoning, a suddenpush over the edge,or a falling overboard in a storm.A choking by a demon on the loose,a bar room brawlat the local pub.So when it happened, it seemedlike someonegot it right. Right time,right reason,for God to let ithappen.
Revised Common Lectionary © 1992 the Consultation on Common Texts. Used by permission.
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