April 8, 2020

We are at the mid-point of Holy Week, and our Lenten journey will carry us through the most intense days that a person might imagine. Given that Surgeon General Gerome Adams said earlier this week, “This is going to be the hardest and the saddest week of most Americans’ lives, quite frankly. “This is going to be our Pearl Harbor moment, our 9/11 moment, only it’s not going to be localized. It’s going to be happening all over the country. And I want America to understand that.” 

As followers of Jesus, we have an older narrative, the life and death and resurrection of Jesus. Jesus’ story provides a pattern and a model for how to walk through this hardest time we might imagine.  Jesus’ story moves us in one week from despair to great shock, great joy, and great hope! 

Former Interim Minister, and dear friend Rev. Clara Young, shared the poem below with me two days ago. Sorrow-filled Road summons us to intentionally and faithfully journey through this week in which pandemic and passion are intertwined. I pray that it touches you as much as it did me.

Walking together to a new life! – Anne

Sorrow-filled Road

Holy Week summons

People of faith

On a different road

A Sorrow-filled Road

Through a lonesome valley

Mired in the mud 

Caught in the quarantine’s quicksand

The path from parade to empty tomb

Seems littered with obstacles

Too heavy to move

“Hosanna” we cry out

“Hosanna” “Save Us”

Save us from power valued more than people

Save us from greed determining life or death

Save us from imaginary outcomes obscuring science

Save us from self-indulgence over common good

“Hosanna” we cry out

“Hosanna” “Save Us”

Set Your table before us in the presence of those who fail us

Fill us with Your mercy and Your compassion

Break open the Bread of Life for all your children

Pour the Cup of Blessing upon us

Fill us O Lord, fill us

Bring us into Your Holy Presence O God

Praying not just for what we want

But for what others need.

Bring us into the presence of 

            The lonely

            The fearful

            The anxious 

            The exhausted

            Those worried about bills

            Those who have no home

            Those who are fearful to be isolated at home

            Those who are overcome 

Bring us into Your Holy Presence O God to see those we pass by daily

Standing before the cross this year we see suffering unimaginable

No longer a ritual for Good Friday afternoon

Every day, every hour we see pandemic’s pain

The cost of our unpreparedness

Convicted of the sin of omission 

We pray, “Father, forgive us”

You take on this suffering of the world

Even as You did so long ago

You take on our pain

In the cross is our salvation, our healing

In the midst of death, life

Signs of life litter our roadside

Redbud and forsythia

Green buds and leafing trees

Our sorrowful road bursts with touches of color

Cases recovered

Curves dipping

Community happening, even in containment

Easter moments every day

Holy Week summons

People of faith

On a sorrow-filled road

Walking together

To a new life.

Clara Young

April 6, 2020

Holy Week during COVID-19 Pandemic

Categories Uncategorized

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