Monday, April 02, 2007

Holy Week and Songkran Festival

We had a wonderful Palm Sunday worship service yesterday. It was a good occasion to start the observance of the Holy week which begins today. I’m surprise that the holy week comes early this year. I always thought that lent happens at the same time as Songkran Festival here in Thailand. This is the first instance in four years that as far as I know (and it is not that far) that these celebrations happen on different dates. There is weird feeling when Christian and Buddhist religious festivals occur on the same date. As a Christian, I ask myself, if it is okay to join the festival. I mean, I don’t have much choice, do I? As a part of a community I can’t refuse a person much more stop them from splashing icy cold water all over me. Nor I can refuse someone who does it within the bound of reason and decency. They are the ones who stop people and ask permission to pour water on your head and shoulders as he personally blesses you. This is more of a community ritual with religious overtone. Songkran Festival is just around the corner. My children are looking forward to it. Where they can play with out neighbors squirting a state of the art water gun to them and got high pressured water jetting out from the hose. It will be a lot of fun. A celebration of a close knitted big community. Where total strangers speak to each other and treat one another as friends. I guess even enemies become lovers.

But for a while, we will be observing the Holy Week. We will be commemorating the sufferings of our Lord Jesus Christ on the cross. We will try to reimagine our Lord's triumphal entry, the Last Supper with his disciples, the drama of his arrest, his crucifixion, his death, and his resurrection on Easter Sunday. We will have a nightly worship service in the church starting tonight until Saturday and it will conclude in the celebration of resurrection as we will hold the Easter Sunrise Service on Sunday Morning at 5:00 AM. Our prayer is that our reflection would remind us of God's great love for us.

Unlike Songkran, this celebration of lent and Easter will go unnoticed by majority of people. But for us here, a handful of Christians who believe that Jesus is the Lord of lords and he is the King of kings, we make the holy week really holy and we will celebrate Easter Sunday with the anticipation of the actual coming again of our King to liberate us from all kinds of poverty and oppression.

5 comments:

Biby Cletus said...

well its an excellent post you have here onHoly Week and Songkran Festival , i really enjoyed reading it, will be back soon,Do keep up the good work


regards Biby - Blog

keropok lekor said...

So I cherish the old rugged cross,
Till my trophies at last I lay down,
I will cling to the old rugged cross,
And exchange it some day for a crown

Joey said...

Hi Biby,

Thanks for the visit and i'm happy that you actually enjoyed it. You have a very interesting blog yourself and you seem to be a techie as well.

Hi Keropok,

Good to see ya again.

Best wishes!

Ian from England said...

very interesting - my friends i support and try and help in various ways are in Chiang Mai doing missions work there (German/Malaysian couple).

Check them out on http://www.cornerstoneasia.co.uk

Jayred said...

That festival sounds interesting. It was wise of you to participate in the fest in order to be part of the community you are ministering to.