Dear Family and Friends of St.Andrew’s
Holy Week marks the pivotal point of the Christian Year. It is celebrated throughout the World in the Christian Church culminating on Easter Morning in the Garden with the Empty Tomb . Mary Magdalene was in the Garden that morning and approaches a man who she thought was the gardener and asks him if he knows where they have taken the Lord. He turns to her and addresses her by her name “Mary” and she immediately recognizes him as her risen Lord and addresses him as “Rabii” teacher. A very simple quiet scene of an event which would change history.
This is in stark contrast to the week which had preceded Easter morning. The story is set in Jerusalem the week of Passover with its teeming crowds of pilgrims and the whole city was a hot bed of insurgents who wanted to stir up trouble for the hated Roman oppressors.
At the beginning of the week Jesus is greeted with joyfull supporters shouting “Hosanna ,blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! ” At the end of the week crowds gather at his trial and shout for his death “Crucify Him!” Are these the same people or two different factions greeting Jesus? A friend of mine a fellow priest thinks not. His interpretation is that the one’s who greeted him on Palm Sunday were looking to Jesus as the promised Messiah or deliverer who would free them from the shackles of Roman oppression and conquest. Those at his trial demanding his death were collaborators with Rome who were growing fat on Roman favouritism. I leave it to you to come to your own conclusions.
Whatever we think the scene in the Garden is a stark contrast to the events of Holy Week. God who came in the person of Jesus took upon himself the fulness of our humanity with its joys and sufferings and in the end in the stillness of the morning renews our hope by addressing us by our name and we in turn recognize him as the one who gives us hope.
This Easter will happen in spite of which crowd we join. It will happen inspite of the challenging times we live in and its message of hope will shout across the Ages:
“The Lord is Risen, He is risen indeed Alleluia! “
A joyous and happy Easter to you all,
Chaplain and Pastor elect