Lection Connection - Spirit Sightings

April 14, 2019: Palm/Passion Sunday

From Ray McGinnis


In August 2018 a global movement of students began protesting the lack of leadership among the world’s leaders to address climate change. Sixteen-year-old Greta Thunberg’s protest on August 20th was the spark that started it all. The summer of 2018 was the hottest on record in Sweden. The average temperature was 10C (18F) above normal. In a typical summer there were three wildfires in Sweden. But in 2018 there were more than 50.


Sweden needed the international community to help and firefighters came from Denmark, Estonia, France, Finland, Germany, Italy, Lithuania, Norway, Poland and Portugal. Greta Thunberg decided she would not go back to school when classes began, but protest in front of the Riksdag, Swedish Parliament buildings, in Stockholm.


Thunberg was inspired to start a protest after she learned about the teen activists at the Parkland school in Florida. She spoke before world leaders in Brussels and London during the fall, and on December 4, 2018, before UN leaders at a climate summit in Katowice, Poland.


She has spoken at Davos and the World Economic Forum. In March 2019, she was nominated to receive the Nobel Peace Prize. At one of the protests in Stockholm, Thunberg said, “We have only been born into this world, we are going to have to live with this crisis our whole lives. So will our children and grandchildren and coming generations. We are not going to accept this. We are striking because we want a future and we are going to carry on.”


Thunberg’s action has sparked student protests for climate change around the world. In Canada an upcoming National School Strike for Climate Action will take place on Friday, May 3.


Explore…Luke 19:28–40

  • Why did a multitude of people gather to follow Jesus into Jerusalem? As the procession arrived at the gates of Jerusalem, why did the Pharisees tell Jesus to order his disciples to stop?
  • Why did Greta Thunberg decide to protest outside the Swedish Parliament? Why were other students around the world inspired by her example?
  • Is there a value or cause you would champion today? Would you choose to express your ideals and ideas in a public setting?
  • Who is an example of someone who has inspired you to follow their lead?



God of processions and parades, we seek to follow someone who can lead us to a better place, someone who offers a vision that makes even the stones shout out. Help us discern what our spiritual gifts are. Help us to discern if this is the time for us to follow or to lead for the sake of your kingdom. In Christ we pray. Amen.


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