Thursday, April 17, 2014

Easter Sunday--He is Risen Indeed!

Easter is what the Church is all about.  Easter is the day when we get to join together to proclaim that Jesus Christ rose from the grave and that because of that, all of us will rise from our graves, too.  Throughout the entire year, but most especially on Easter Sunday, we Christians celebrate the fact that "death has lost its sting" (to quote "Thine is the Glory," which itself is paraphrasing St. Paul in 1 Cor 15:55).  It's not surprising then that we'll have a lot of festivities at Bethany Sunday morning to celebrate this moment so critical to our faith.

Easter Sunrise: We will gather at first for Easter Sunrise at 7:30am.  (I know it seems early, but it's Easter!)  The youth will be leading us in a service that will take us through the Seven Last Words of Christ.  Through this, we will see that the cross and the empty tomb are linked completely together and that Christ's victory over both the cross and the grave gives us our hope.  As we make our way through, the paraments that were first stripped on Maundy Thursday will be added back to the altar and the cross will be flowered, signaling new life from death.  The youth will sing a couple songs that they have prepared, and we as a congregation will sing "Christ the Lord is Risen Today!  Alleluia!" and "The Strife is O'er; the Battle Done."

Easter Egg Hunt: I always loved this event when I was little.  I am told now that the egg is supposed to symbolize the empty tomb.  I have always thought of it also as a sign of spring and new life.  This event will primarily be for children.  I am not sure if the vicar will be allowed to participate or not.  

Easter Breakfast: Need I say more?

Easter Service with Holy Communion: This is the big one, and it starts at 10am.  One of my favorite things about Easter Sunday service is the vibe of excitement that is in the air.  From the very beginning, we will shout together, "Christ is risen!" "He is risen indeed! Alleluia!"  We will hear the Gospel of the empty tomb, and we will sing those great Easter hymns together--namely anything with Jesus Christ being risen, such as "Christ is Risen! Alleluia!," "Jesus Christ is Risen Today!," "Now All the Vault of Heaven Resounds."  And we will even sing a personal favorite "Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing" as we gather at the table to celebrate the promised feast of our Lord.  

So please come to which services you can.  This is the biggest weekend of the Church year.  Think of it as our "Final Four" (Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter Vigil, and Easter Sunday).  I hope you and your families all have a blessed Holy Week and a joyful Easter!  

No comments:

Post a Comment