O God, by the passion of your blessed Son you made an instrument of shameful death to be for us the means of life: Grant us so to glory in the cross of Christ, that we may gladly suffer shame and loss for the sake of your Son our Savior Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Collect from the 1979 Book of Common Prayer
Holy Week or Passion Week is perhaps the busiest time of the year for clergy. Some may argue that the twelve days of Christmas are, however I beg to differ. Considering the sorrowfulness of the week leading up to Easter or Resurrection Sunday, compounded with the amount of tasks that need to be completed, this time frame stretches even the most squared away clergy person. As I prepare for the Holy Week activities both in the parish I serve, and the many other ministries I am active in, I make sure to pause and sit in the midst of this sorrow. I try to image the thoughts of those involved.
Today’s Gospel reading is from the Gospel according to Saint John, 12.20-36. Jesus is letting the apostles know that HIS time to depart is approaching. They do not fully understand, due to their human and finite logic. It is much the same logic that we display when certain acts or events occur in our lives that we do not understand. They are concerned with making sure the preparation for the Passover Seder is being addressed and managed. This is much like how we worry about the Easter Sunrise Service being attended to, and not placing time in to reflect on the reason for the Sunrise Service in the first place.
During the remainder of Holy Week, I encourage you to find time to pause…to reflect on why this time of year is so important. I urge you to make time to commune with Jesus. I pray you well during this Passion Week.