Today is the first Sunday of the month as well as Palm Sunday. Not very long ago, we were planning on a fulsome service this April 5, which alas, is not so.

I think of Palm Sunday as a day that belongs to the children, with its sense of festivity and pomp. It is a day for expressing exuberance and joy.

From an adult and history informed perspective, though, we know that Palm Sunday is something of a false Easter, given what follows with Maundy Thursday and Good Friday intervening before the great day of (the real) Easter arrives and the sense of celebration can come into full bloom.

So, as I reach out to you, as reach out I must because we are related together under this banner of Pakachoag Church and I want to reinforce our sense of connectedness, I raise before us the image of Holy Week which lies ahead, with its torments and despair, with its dashed promises and sundered lives, and remind us all that beyond the struggle that the ensuing days after Palm Sunday brought to Jesus and his followers restoration eventually followed.

Alas, our Holy Week shall not be one, but many weeks long, and we as a people will be tested and retested, and loss will surround us, but our charge is to strive and strive again and not fall away before we reach the goal.