Palm Sunday A

Day: Palm Sunday

Lectionary Passage: Matthew 21:1-11

Scripture Focus: Matthew 21:9

Object: None

Preparation: This sermon uses a popular sports tradition in Arkansas known as “Calling the Hogs” in support of the University of Arkansas football team, the Razorbacks. If your area has a similar tradition, go ahead and change out the Hog Call for your tradition. Otherwise, teach your children a little something extra this Sunday about the state of Arkansas!

Well, you guys know that I’m not from around here. When I first moved to Arkansas I heard all these people talking about “Calling the Hogs”. I didn’t have any idea what they were talking about, but I kept picturing a bunch of pigs running down the driveway while an old farmer yelled. Eventually I learned that “Calling the Hogs” is something Razorback fans do at games when they get excited. I wanted to make sure I knew how this “Hog Call” thing worked so I asked around. According to my sources, a proper Hog Call has three “calls” and you slowly raise you arms from your knees to above your head during the “Woo.” The “Woo” should last about 8 seconds. When the “Woo” is done, both arms are brought down to the side to yell “Pig” and finally the right arm is extended up and out with the “Sooie.” You do that three times. And at the end you yell “Razorbacks!” You want to try?

Woooooooo. Pig. Sooie!

Woooooooo. Pig. Sooie!

Woooooooo. Pig. Sooie!

Razorbacks!

That was fun! I bet it’s a lot of fun at games when a whole crowd is yelling in excitement. And that reminds me of our Bible story. It’s about another crowd yelling something kind of strange when they got excited. They were yelling “Hosanna! Blessed is the One who comes in the name of the Lord.” That isn’t something you hear every day! The word “Hosanna” means “Savior” and the crowd was shouting it to… can you guess?… that’s right, Jesus! Because Jesus is the Savior! They were so excited to see him that day because they knew he was the one God sent to save them. And they had their very own special chant to yell over and over again as Jesus road through the city.

Let’s pray: God, we give you thanks for sending Jesus who is our Savior, who is Hosanna! Help us always greet with excitement! Amen.

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