Sunday, March 24, 2013

Palm Sunday

29 years ago today (by the liturgical calendar at least--by the secular calendar it was April 15 [I just checked]) I was confirmed at the age of 15.  I was in Grade 9.

In that era in that congregation it was the practice that Teen Confirmation always happened on Palm Sunday.  Before that you met once a week (in the case of our year we had a weekly potluck) starting in the mid-fall. 

To be honest I don't remember a whole lot about what we talked about in all those meetings.  I do remember that there was some time taken for team-building.  I also remember that the Diaconal Minister who was leading us was somewhat out of his depth and that the group got much better once he asked the youth group leader to assist him.  There were times when hard questions were asked--both by leaders and by classmates.  But the only discrete piece of content I remember for sure is a Christmas Quiz that I have used a couple of times since then.

And within a couple years of our Confirmation a small handful of us were regularly seen on Sunday morning, with a slightly larger handful seen at youth group on Sunday evening.

But what I do remember is those Confirmation services.  Pam Sunday as Confirmation day went on past the end of the 80's and into the 90's when I was teaching Sunday School.  Which meant that the Palm Sunday service was a LOOOOONG service.  You would have a Palm Parade and some sort of Children's Time, then the Sunday School folks would head off .  THen the rest of the service would include a full-length sermon, and Confirmation, and often a baptism or two (at the very least from within the Teen Confirmands), and then we might as well do membership transfers that day, and then we had to have Communion of Confirmation Day.  The upshot was that it was 2 hours easily.  And those of us teaching Sunday School, particularly those of us with the Grade 4-6 age group were going a little bit crazy.

I always try to remember those years when we have special, added, stuff happening in worship.

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