An Enote from Pastor Ron

FUMC Pastor Rons Desk El Centro California.jpg

Dear Friends,

The Gospel of Mark provides us a day-by-day description of the events of Holy Week. Yesterday, Sunday, we celebrated Palm Sunday, the entry into Jerusalem by Jesus. The scripture passage is Mark 11:1-11

Today, Monday, Jesus leaves Bethany and makes his way back to Jerusalem (it’s only a 45 minute walk) and enters the temple where he drives out he money changers. In effect he is shutting down the temple. Why? Because, he says, “you have made it a den of robbers.” You can follow along by reading Mark 11:12-19.

Tomorrow I’ll write about the fig tree that is mentioned at the beginning of this passage.

During Holy Week we will have two worship services. The first will be Thursday, March 29 at 7:00 p.m. We call it Maundy Thursday, remembering the Mandatum Novum, new commandment, to Love One Another. This year our Maundy Thursday worship will be a modified Seder Meal, served in the Olive Street Center. It is the beginning of the celebration of Easter and is not to be missed!

Because there will be an actual meal it is important to RSVP (sign up) so we know how much food to prepare. The sign up will be this Sunday. Or you can email me by responding to this enote. Thanks in advance!!

The second, Good Friday, will be Friday, March 30 from 7-8:00 p.m. This will be an interactive, modified, Stations of the Cross. You will be able to come and walk with Jesus as you remember why we call this Friday good.

I truly hope you will make time for these deeply spiritual evenings. I guarantee your Easter will never be the same if you do.

On the calendar for March (Bold events are this week):

  • Maundy Thursday worship will begin at 7 p.m. in the Olive Street Center. Good Friday worship will be held from 6-8 p.m. and will be an interactive reflection on the Passion of Jesus. 
  • Easter Sunday is April 1st. There will be two celebrations of the resurrection of Jesus, 6:20 a.m. and 10 a.m. 

Here are the prayer requests for this week:

Betty Cloud asks prayers for a safe journey to Indianapolis with her son Matt to visit her brother and his family.

Prayers for all who are traveling this holiday season.

Nicole Pankratz asks prayers for Debbie Cameron and Denise Smith who are both receiving treatment for cancer.

Prayers for the student led marches held this weekend and for the courage of our political leaders to respond through sensible, reasonable laws governing the ownership and use of firearms.

Be well. See you Sunday! (And hopefully on Thursday and/or Friday as well!)

In Christ’s love, Pastor Ron

JFON on the Border: Imperial Valley JFON celebrates Grand Opening and First Clinic

HE BORDER IS JUST DIFFERENT…

It was meant to be a desert. Modern irrigation, however, turned the valley into the second-largest agricultural area in California. An aerial view shows a vast expanse of light and dark green checkerboards; 80 percent of our nation’s salad greens come from these fields.  Take a closer look, however, and see the weather-beaten faces of men and women, their bodies bent and stooped as they move through the neat furrows. These are our immigrant neighbors who make all that lettuce possible.  <READ MORE HERE>

Advocacy group to offer legal services for immigrants

Justice For Our Neighbors, a newly formed organization that aims to provide free or low-cost legal services to local immigrants, is seeking volunteers and donations to help keep its novel efforts sustainable.

The founding of the local chapter was set in motion by a local immigration forum that was convened in November 2015 at Imperial Valley College, which in turn had prompted a loosely formed group of like-minded individuals to start hosting monthly legal clinics for immigrants.  <READ MORE HERE>