He is not here for he is risen!
As I write this, what beautiful spring weather we’re having! It’s the kind of weather I always associate with Easter. We are so blessed in the northern hemisphere that Easter and springtime coincide. It seems the whole of creation is joining in with the joyful Easter cries of Hallelujah! Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Hallelujah!
Of course, before we can arrive at Easter Sunday morning, when we celebrate by being back in church and sharing in Holy Communion, we need to continue in Jesus’ footsteps for the final countdown of Holy Week. The jubilation of Palm Sunday will lead to Maundy Thursday and Good Friday and we will read again the account of Christ’s passion and gaze in sorrow and awe at the love which holds Jesus to the cross. Each of these events will be marked by an act of worship. Please see details elsewhere in this newsletter.
Every part of the Easter story – palms, passion, crucifixion and resurrection – is in itself a blessing, but whilst some are obvious, others have to be unpacked. Yet the miracle of Easter would not be complete without each part of the story.
Talking of blessings, thank you to those of you who have shared some of your A-Z of blessings with me; it was a joy to read them. Topping everyone’s list were family and friends but especially family who were named generally and often individually. They were closely followed by creation and nature – the sheer pleasure of looking on it or being out in it or working with it in our gardens. Maggy Garton even compiled a list of floral blessings, every letter representing at least one flower or plant! Health and happiness, love and laughter, kindness of friends and strangers: all these featured in every list in some form or another.
There were some more unusual ones too: some were powerful, some were moving, some made me laugh. I’ve put them into a separate article because there were too many to include in this letter.
What I have taken away from naming my blessings in this way is just how much I have for which to be thankful. I hope you feel the same. What a wonderful, generous and loving God we have!
The greatest blessing of all though has to be this: that God so loved the world that he gave his only Son that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world but that the world, through him, might be saved. (John 3: 16 & 17) Jesus came to be born as one of us, to live among us, to die for us and to rise again, victorious over death, that we might know the full measure of God’s love for us. Hallelujah! What a Saviour!
With every blessing for Easter and always,
Services for Holy week to Easter Sunday
Maundy Thursday there will be a Circuit service via Zoom, hosted by Crowthorne MC. This will be in the form of a Love Feast, an old Methodist tradition, and you are invited to bring a drink and a snack with you when you come to your computer. The service begins at 7pm but there is an opportunity for fellowship from 6.45pm and we would urge people to join in and be part of that.
The Zoom link is:
Maundy Thursday 1st April 2021
Meeting ID: 895 0223 2148
Good Friday worship will be led by Christine and David Morgan and will be available online via our website link or direct via our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCIjvFL376VgJIv47eHecZVg
Easter Sunday: I’m thrilled to say that worship will take place in church at the usual time of 10.30am and will include Holy Communion. However, we do still need to observe social distancing and the wearing of masks (unless you are exempt). We won’t be able to sing BUT we have some other ideas of how to join in and show our joy!