In the midst of Holy Week

It’s the Wednesday before Maundy Thursday – the middle of Holy Week. When I was younger, the idea of Maundy Thursday was very confusing. Probably a large part of that was my confusion and assuming that my parents were saying “Monday Thursday…” I mean, come on! Monday Thursday? Make up your mind… I had issues like this when I was younger. I remember not understanding why my parents would be looking forward to the return of the tourists to Huaraz, the city I grew up in (which has a tourism based economy.) The reason the tourists were coming back was because the problems we’d been having with terrorism were slowly improving. My young mind had a hard time differentiating between the tourists and terrorists. (Sometimes, my adult mind has a difficult time as well…) I remember thinking “But I thought terrorists were bad. And now we’re excited to have them return?” But I digress…

One of the downsides of being a protestant in an overwhelmingly Catholic country is that the protestant church can sometimes protest a bit much… Here in Brazil, you see that with a violent rejection of the pageantry and ceremony that permeates Catholicism. And that is sad to me. I remember being in Jerusalem for Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter morning – symbolism was in the air we breathed and the water we drank – and it was one of the richest experiences I had yet known. Walking the stations of the cross, praying in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, watching the flame slowly lighting and spreading throughout the church on Orthodox Easter, palm branches and stones and soaking in the poetic imagery that surrounded us. I miss that, and don’t know best how to include it in my life here…

And it’s now a little after midnight, and I’m trying to get to bed at a half-way decent time… the profundity that I was digging for tonight just wouldn’t come. And maybe that’s ok.

May this week be full of celebration and life for each of ya’ll…

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Filed under celebration, easter, memories, remember

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