Monday, April 14, 2014

Good afternoon friends,
We're entering a special time in the church year called Holy Week. Even if you haven't been thinking much about Lent, Holy Week is a great opportunity to focus on the story of the last moments in Jesus' life. As I've learned more deeply over the last month, death and new life are closely connected. The power of the Christian story is that it's all about love and that it's honest about the barriers to love that we face. Christian faith takes the trouble in the world and in our lives seriously, so the tragic notes in the final days of Jesus' life resonate with our experience.

If we spend time in this dark part of the story, we'll be ready to embrace the good news of Easter and the resurrection more fully and honestly. So I invite you to Holy Week in worship and in personal reflection. Our Holy Week worship starts with an ecumenical service at St. Ambrose (Culver and Empire) at 7:30 tonight. The service tells the story of Christ's last week in scripture and music; I can almost guarantee you will find it approachable and meaningful no matter how unfamiliar or familiar you might be with the story.

Today's reading takes us to Thursday night and Jesus' last supper with his disciples.

God bless,

John 13:1-11

Now before the festival of the Passover, Jesus knew that his hour had come to depart from this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end. 2The devil had already put it into the heart of Judas son of Simon Iscariot to betray him.

And during supper 3Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he had come from God and was going to God, 4got up from the table, took off his outer robe, and tied a towel around himself. 5Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel that was tied around him. 6He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?” 7Jesus answered, “You do not know now what I am doing, but later you will understand.”

8Peter said to him, “You will never wash my feet.” Jesus answered, “Unless I wash you, you have no share with me.” 9Simon Peter said to him, “Lord, not my feet only but also my hands and my head!” 10Jesus said to him, “One who has bathed does not need to wash, except for the feet, but is entirely clean. And you are clean, though not all of you.” 11For he knew who was to betray him; for this reason he said, “Not all of you are clean.”

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