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the Holy Week edition

March 29, 2021


It was Sunday . . . a day of great rejoicing. Palm Sunday. The day of the Triumphal Entry.

It was Wednesday . . . a nothing day . . . an everything day . . . the beginning of the end though most of the disciples did not realize it. Wednesday. The day Judas agreed to betray Jesus.

It was Thursday . . . a day for community. The disciples and Jesus together in the Upper Room to have a meal together. Jesus, teaching on servanthood. Jesus, washing the feet of the disciples. Gethsemane. Prayer. Betrayal. Arrest. Denial. Thursday. The day of the Last Supper.

It was Friday . . . a day of . . . pain . . . sorrow . . . suffering. In front of the Sanhedrin. Taken to Pilate. To Herod. Back to Pilate. The trial . . . of a sort. Beaten. And whipped. Insurrectionist Barabbas freed. And the final indignity: crucified like a common criminal. Friday. Good Friday? The day of death.

 

 

It’s Friday . . . But Sunday’s Coming!

 

Normally we would join with Bridlewood Church to remember the passion of Christ in a shared Good Friday service. This year Bridlewood is meeting with the church that also uses their facility. As Trinity Church will not host a service, please find a service near you or on-line to worship with and help you focus on Jesus’ sacrifice for us.

Next Sunday is the day of ultimate celebration. It is Freedom Sunday. It is Resurrection Sunday. It is Easter Sunday! We remember that He is risen! We are reminded that Satan doesn’t have the final word – hope does! We are reminded that death is not the end; it is the beginning (as Paul wrote,

“Death is swallowed up in victory.

“O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?”

The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ [1 Corinthians 15:54-56]).

We are reminded that we are restored to favour with God – that the barriers that we put up between Him and us have been removed. It truly is the day of ultimate celebration!

Our message: The Fall and Rise of Jesus

We will again gather on-line and in-building at 11:00 with our worship team leading in celebration and praise through song. Those who will join us online through our streaming services rather than in the sanctuary can click here to find us on Facebook and click here to find us on YouTube. If there are problems with one feed or the other someone will post a cross-link once the problem is known.

 

Hosanna!

Blessed is he who comes in God’s name!

Blessed the coming kingdom of our father David!

Hosanna in highest heaven! [from Mark 11:10]

 Palm Sunday. A great day of celebration. Sure, some of the excitement may have been caused by Jesus – when He rode into town a party atmosphere developed. And sure, some of the excitement may have been caused by Jesus – when He rode into town people started looking to see a miracle or two (as the song goes, a trick or two with lepers, and the whole town’s on its feet). And sure, some of the excitement was definitely caused by Jesus – when He rode into town He was showing Himself as Messiah (of a sort, anyway), and that got them going. His entrance was exciting and exhilarating and electrifying . . . just amazing.

Even though He didn’t turn out to be what they wanted or expected. Messiahs don’t serve – they rule! Biases and expectations got in the way of the people of Israel so they couldn’t see God’s plan and God’s ideal . . . they only saw what they wanted to see. Biases and expectations and prejudices can get in our way of seeing people – of seeing people – for who they are as well. People.

YPulse asked 13- to 37-year-olds, “What do you think is the biggest problem for your generation?”. The number one answer “racism and discrimination.” This age group sees life through the lens of people being discriminated against (primarily discriminated against by white people). The first thought in a mass killing event (as we water down what these “events” are) is “Is this racially motivated?” So the “event” in Atlanta . . . was it based on racism – on anti-Asian hate? The “event” in Boulder . . . was it based on racism – on the hatred of white people? It seems that when we look for the reason for these acts, the question of race is at the forefront. And it may be so, as sad as that is.

Biases. Expectations. Self-examination of our own attitudes wouldn’t be a bad thing. Nor would honestly looking at our lives in Jesus to see how we meet His call to love, Yes, while I did say that we should banish comparison from our lives, comparing ourselves with Jesus is necessary so that we can work toward – so that we can live in – His ideals of love and compassion and mercy and justice.

The week started well, that Palm Sunday. It didn’t end well, for Him or for the disciples. He was arrested and the disciples bailed on Him. As an aside, I think that there are people that you know . . . people in our congregation . . . that feel abandoned. Feel forsaken. Feel forgotten. COVID is affecting us all, but some more than others. Remember the forgotten. Remember those you haven’t seen in a while. Contact them in some way this week (even those that you think might be doing “OK”).

Palm Sunday was the beginning of the end. At the same time it was the end of the beginning and the beginning of a new beginning. When Jesus rode into town there was a hopeful excitement. And while it was not what they expected, it was what God knew was necessary.

Yesterday’s service can be found on our Facebook page (click here) and on our YouTube page (click here); you can also link from our web site (click here). The transcript of yesterday’s message has been uploaded to our web site – click here to download a copy.

Thanks to those who “checked in” during our service yesterday. We do want to know if you joined us, either live or delayed (the feeds are saved so that anyone can go back to them later). Please use trinityconnects@rogers.com to check in rather than the church e-mail address.

 

Make sure to go to your app store and download the Easter Now app -- it will guide you through the events of Holy Week.

This week we conclude our Lenten readings (the reading of the four gospels) this week, which look at the complete story of Jesus' birth, life, death and resurrection from the differing perspectives of the four writers:

  • Day 41 John 13-14               
  • Day 42 John 15-16
  • Day 43 John 17-18               
  • Day 44 John 19-20
  • Day 45 John 21                     
  • Day 46 1 Corinthians 15
  • Day 47 Easter Sunday

               

Our Tuesday time together is cancelled this week, as I have a District Board of Ministry meeting that will last from early morning stretching into early evening.

We will, though, meet Wednesday evening to pray for one another in our "virtual (ZOOM) prayer room". Our God hears our prayers, whether they are audible or silent.  E-mail Pastor Frank at ottawatrinity@rogers.com for log-in information

 

We appreciate your faithful and generous giving in support of our ministry at Trinity Church. We continue to receive our tithes and offerings through e-transfer (ottawatrinity@rogers.com) and through the Canada Helps web site (click here).  You can also drop your tithe envelopes through the mail slot at the church or mail them to the church.

 

Our “net presence” is growing: Trinity Church is now on Instagram. Chloe has set things up and is monitoring the app. Click here to discover a little bit more of us and to “follow our story”. Thanks to Chloe for setting it up and monitoring it.

 

“The Church” is not perfect . . . in fact, she is merely (I am hesitant to use that word) a gathering of broken, hurting, yet growing people, searching together for a deeper and meaningful relationship with Jesus. Members of the universal church by a committed relationship with Him, there is something . . . special . . . about being part of a local church and part of a denomination . . . to be able to say this is my church; this is my home (even though it already may be).

 

We invite those who already consider Trinity Church their home church to “join” the church with official membership. We’ll hold a ZOOM membership class Thursday April 8 from 7:00 pm; please e-mail me if you are interested in joining us to discover more about the Church of the Nazarene (even if you think you already know!).

 

District Assembly will take place on Saturday, June 5th and will be a condensed virtual gathering on Zoom and live streamed on the District YouTube Channel between 9:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.  Local churches will need to elect delegates to the Assembly. We are planning to host a District Online Family Reunion Service as we did last year, on Sunday, June 6th.  We are encouraging our Local Churches to use this service as your main worship service on that day. We will share more details of the Assembly and Family Reunion as the plans develop.

 

Upcoming Services

 

Looking to Easter

  • Apr     4   The Fall and Rise of Jesus

Post Easter Services

  • Apr   11   Matt Speaking
  • Apr   18   Oops . . . Not Oops . . . a message for Earth Day
  • Apr   25   Red and Yellow Black and White
  • May    2   Waiting for the Dove: our Annual Meeting
  • May    9   Ah, Yes . . . a Mother’s Day message
  • May  16   a service of music and celebration
  • May  23   Pentecost
  • May  30   Invasion
  • Jun      6   District Assembly Service
  • Jun    13   UN-chained