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Pilgrimage 2024 – Holy Monday

Knowing Christ and Making Him Known

Welcome to the second day of our pilgrimage, and well done for finding the poster!

Today is Holy Monday. This whole week, which tells the story of the last week of Jesus’ life, is known as Holy Week. “Holy” means something like “special.” The four Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) all tell us about Jesus in slightly different ways. All of them write a lot about the last week of Jesus’ life. (In fact, nearly half of John’s book is about that one week! That’s how special it is!)

Yesterday, we read about Jesus riding into Jerusalem. Mark’s Gospel tells us that after he had had a look around, he went back to his friends’ house in a place called Bethany. We pick up the story the next day… Read it in Mark 11:15-18 (hover over this to read it – or click to open in a new window).

This story is a little bit uncomfortable. We like to think of Jesus being calm and quiet, but here, he is angry. When we think about it, we can see why…

The Temple in Jerusalem was a big building with four main areas.

  1. There was the “Holy of Holies” which was the most special place – set aside for God alone.
  2. Around this was the “Holy Place” where only the priests and temple workers could go.
  3. Then there was the main temple gathering area which was for God’s people (the Jews) to come for worship.
  4. And finally, there was space called the “Court of the Gentiles” which was for people from other countries.

The stalls of the money changers and traders were all in the Court of the Gentiles. By filling this area with stalls, the religious leaders in charge of the temple had made it almost impossible for anyone from another nation to worship. They claimed that they were doing the right thing, of course:

  • They were providing the opportunity for people to buy doves for the sacrifices.
  • They let the moneychangers in to ensure that no coins bearing the images of other gods were used for the collections.

But this actually made it harder for some to come. Jesus was cross. God loves people from every nation and had intended that the temple should have space for everyone. That’s what the prophet Isaiah said (Isaiah 56:7), so that’s what Jesus says. And he starts putting it right in a startling way, clearing away everything that stopped the people coming to God.


Have you ever thought that God was only interested in some people – not in everyone? Have you ever wondered whether he might care for you?

These once well-known words from John’s Gospel tells us something really important: John 3:16.

That includes you, even if you’ve not given him much thought. Jesus came to clear away everything that gets in between you and God.

If you are interested in finding out more about this, join the pilgrimage again tomorrow to see what happened next in Jesus’ story and to learn how your story might be different.


Today’s Codeword is the letter “X”. Add this to the other codewords through the course of the week to unlock a prize.

Tomorrow’s poster will be outside Hunsdon Garage.