It has been a while since we’ve been able to raise our voices together. Still, many of us long to shout our praise to Jesus, to bear witness, to give thanks.

Be still now, and listen for “Hosannas” to rise from deep within you.

God is good. God’s love lasts forever.

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The one who enters in the Lord’s name is blessed; we bless all of you from the Lord’s house. The Lord is God! He has shined a light on us! So lead the festival offering with ropes all the way to the horns of the altar. You are my God—I will give thanks to you! You are my God—I will lift you up high! Give thanks to the Lord because he is good, because his faithful love lasts forever.

Psalm 118:26-29

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This year for Palm Sunday, our church is planning a parade. Technically, it’s a procession with palms: we’re meeting in our church parking lot, then walking a few blocks to a local park, where we’ll continue with a few Bible readings, prayers, and songs. We’ve even rented a real, live donkey! After months of being apart, after a handful of awkward drive-in services during the summer, we’re looking forward to something that starts to come close to a festival celebration together. So, a parade it is.

It’s easy to get caught up in the festivities of such a triumphant entry — like Jesus’ own parade into Jerusalem on that first Palm Sunday. It’s easy to imagine getting caught up in the crowd shouting their Hosannas to the Lord, and easy to forget how quickly the crowd turned on him as well. During Sunday’s parade itself, we can ignore Thursday’s coming betrayal and Friday’s suffering and death. They will come soon enough. For now, let us bask in the blessing of God’s goodness for one more day.

Peter Hanson

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You are my God, and I will thank you, praise you, and lift up your name. May the joy and blessing of this festive parade carry us through this week when the world turned upside down. Amen.

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God calls you to shout out loud that the love and mercy of Jesus never end.

Go with strength and courage.

Go with a new “Hosanna” on your lips.

Go, be a blessing in the name of the Lord.


Peter Hanson

Peter Hanson serves as lead pastor at Christ the King/Cristo Rey, a Lutheran congregation in New Brighton, MN which worships in English and Spanish. He has previously served as youth director in a Minnesota megachurch, a street chaplain in Berkeley and San Francisco, a solo pastor in Vermont, and a missionary in Dakar, Senegal. He currently lives in Saint Paul with his spouse Sarah, a yoga instructor and international educator. They have two young adult children, one who works for a legal services firm in Seattle, and one who studies education in Montréal.

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