Ash Wednesday is on the first day of Lent, the 40 days leading up to Easter. Lent is a time when Christians prepare for Easter. This year on Ash Wednesday (the 14th February), a small group gathered at Scots in remembrance of this special day. Our minister, Rev Dr Peter Trudinger explained the meaning of the Lenten Season and reminded us that it is traditionally a time of reflection and confession. With prayer, Bible readings and the singing of hymns, participants were able to enter into the process of thinking and reflection which will lead to the events of Easter. After joining in an act of Communion, each participant was invited to write on a small piece of paper a recollection of something in the past year for which we needed to confess and give up to God, such as a sin committed or an action omitted. The papers were collected and placed in a bowl. Later in the Service, palm crosses from last year were added to the bowl and burned. The resulting ash was mixed with a little oil and participants were invited to go forward to be marked with the ashes on the forehead in the sign of a cross, thus identifying us disciples as we follow Jesus to the cross. It was a moving act of reflection and commitment as we prepare for the Easter Season. Rosalie Smith
For many years Linley Shannon has made Palm Crosses for Scots Church to be distributed on Palm Sunday. She has suffered surgery and ill health for some years and forgot how to make them. She told me “I just forgot how to make them.” Her friends from the Church of the Resurrection very kindly offered to make them for us. Last week she rang me from her hospital room in Loxton with a voice full of great joy to tell me that she now remembers how to make the crosses and she has posted some up to Scots.
Another friend of Scots, Dudley Cockington, has also acquired the skill in making these crosses from Palm fronds and has offered to make us some fore Palm Sunday too.
Both Linley and Dudley know that I am involved with Resthaven Bellevue Heights, and any excess of our needs will be distributed at Resthaven where the residents will be very pleased to receive them.
Many thanks go to Linley and Dudley for enabling Scots to keep this tradition alive and give pleasure to so many people. Margaret Nolan
Two Days in One – Passion / Palm Sunday
The strange dual nature of the Sunday before Easter Day comes from the merger of two traditions in one day. The 6th Sunday in Lent has for centuries been known as Palm Sunday, commemorating Jesus' entry in to Jerusalem and ushering in Holy Week. In earlier times the 5th Sunday in Lent was named Passion Sunday. In the service the full gospel account of the suffering and death of Jesus was read (a very long reading in some years). In many churches crucifixes, pictures and icons were veiled in purple and the following two weeks were known as Passiontide. This tradition continues today in some churches, mostly in the Anglican Communion.
Over the years, however, people were concerned with the odd chronological juxtaposition this created, hearing about and reflecting on the trials and crucifixion prior to the entry into Jerusalem. In the middle of the 20th century the two days became one in most traditions. Perhaps the greatest advantage of this change is that it allows those who only worship on Sundays to experience and ponder the entire sweep of the last days of Jesus' earthly life. Prior to this a practical reality was that many Christians went directly from waving palm branches to celebrating the resurrection without hearing the story of Jesus' last supper, betrayal, arrest, trial, crucifixion and burial on Thursday and Friday. So now the liturgical calendar and lectionary provide us with a logical if very full Sunday, giving us two experiences in one day. Rev Norah Norris
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