Church is the worst place for Christian disciples to be on Easter. Coming together demonstrates that we have not heeded the message. And not merely the message from the Center for Disease Control about gathering in large groups.
Apparently we needed a global pandemic to chase Christians out of the church so that we might act on the Easter message.
But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid; I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has been raised, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples, ‘He has been raised from the dead, and indeed he is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see him.’ This is my message for you.”Matthew 28:5-7 (NRSV)
For Matthew, Galilee represents places where gentile, non-believers live. Thus the angel’s message commands disciples to get out of the Sanctuary and talk with people who do not believe as you believe. A few lines later in this chapter, Jesus does meet with his disciples in Galilee. In Galilee the risen Christ tells them —and us— “Make disciples of all peoples …”
I will have more to say about Matthew 28:1-10 here on Sunday, April 12th. We will also celebrate the Lord’s Supper gathering around the one table that unites all Christians together wherever we might go.
Robert Shaw, Pastor
A Tip for Parents
I need your help preparing for this Sunday’s lesson. Have your child help you gather the following items to create your own flowered cross, a small version of what we would have transformed had we gathered together.
- 2 twigs to make a small cross, these should be readily covered by the flowers you have, perhaps 12″ and 4″.
- Some twist ties, wire, or string to tie the twigs together and to attach flowers to the twigs.
- 6 to 8 flowers, perhaps from your yard, hand made, or …
Worship this Sunday
In addition to items for the children’s lesson, you may wish to have the following items available.
- A piece of bread, a cracker, or …
- Grape juice, wine, or …
- A cup for each person participating in your home
Our Presbytery Stated Clerk provides this guidance: “For the Lord’s Supper, you need only use what is already in your home; there is no need to leave your home for specific elements. This meal is sacred because it unites us across time and space, not because of anything inherent in the elements themselves. Our tradition reminds us that the elements we use for communion are to be common and easily accessible to the community; in this challenging season, the words in the Directory for Worship that “the bread and cup are shared in the manner most appropriate to the occasion” take on new layers of meaning, and we recognize that being able to share common elements in this particular time is both a memory and a hope, even if not a present reality. And, we can still share this meal.“
Please listen to the anthem for today then leave a comment for those who may follow you and for those who made this worship service possible.
As disciples of Jesus Christ we give so that we may dedicate the whole of our lives by sharing a portion of what we earn with others.
Although COVID-19 has forced us to curtail all in person groups, meetings, classes, …, even office hours, we continue other ministries. For example: Wednesday Bible Study and Sunday school for children and the Fellowship Hour all meet via video-teleconference.
In these unusual times we deeply appreciate giving through your bank or by clicking the button. We continue to check our mailbox regularly so you may mail your check to us.
Presbyterian Church (USA) Worship Service
In this unprecedented time of crisis and social distancing, we remain the Church together, united in the risen Christ. The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) invites you to view and share this 37-minute, Easter worship service, so that we might come together in virtual community on this holiest of days. After watching the service, we invite you to share your joyous expressions of Easter on the Presbyterian Church (USA) Facebook page.