Easter April 21st
Dear Church Family, for the week of April 21st
Pastor Jeff says: Read Luke 24:1-12
The resurrection of Jesus is the most monumental event in human history. It is, truly, earth shattering because it turns the world upside down. Suddenly, evil is vanquished and while the victory may not yet be complete, it is assured. For every defeat suffered in life we are given ultimate assurance that “all things work to the good.” Simply put, on Good Friday Satan thought the victory to be his. On Easter Satan awakens to a world made new. The victory Satan thought he had won in the crucifixion has been transformed into the means of his defeat. Christ, who Satan thought he had silenced, is risen and what Satan may have seen as weakness becomes a force that not even Hell can prevail against.
That is the power of this day. But here’s the thing that also surprises me. Peter, the one who had denied Jesus, comes to the tomb and realizing what has taken place – that Christ has risen from the dead – does not seek out the disciples or shout victory from the rooftops of Jerusalem. Luke 24:12 tells us he went home. That surprises me. I would have thought he would have rushed to tell the other disciples what had transpired. Instead, home he goes.
We’ll explore what that might mean for us today; for like Peter, we, too, must return home.
Organist John Atwood tells us: the hymns selected are well loved standards for Easter, and are nice, bright endings to Lent. The anthem, “Now the green blade rises,” proclaims life’s renewal in spring. The Prelude announces a period of light with trumpets blazing. As with so many pieces published by Attaignant the composer is long forgotten. The postlude is a highly spiritual, outer-worldly choral prelude by J. S. Bach concluding the service. (Soli Deo Gratia!)
Lectionary readings for this coming week: (Year C) April 21-27 Acts 10:34-43 (Peter recounts his transformation)
1 Corinthians 15:19-26 (All who belong will also rise)
John 20:1-18 (the truth about the empty tomb)
Psalm 118:1-2,14-24 (the cornerstone)
theme hymn: Christ the Lord is Risen Today
Pastoral Concerns: Pastor Jeff Long-Middleton 978-273-6399 firstname.lastname@example.org
Emergency Assistance: Care Coordinator Carole Taylor 802-222-4590
Easter April 21st
Sunrise Service at Button home on Summer Street, 6:30 am
Easter Breakfast at Grace UMC, 7:00 am
Easter Family worship, 10:00 am
Reminder: if you wish to have a flowering plant on the altar Easter morning, let Janice Larabee know now and bring it to the church kitchen on or before April 20th
Pastor Jeff’s office hours
Sunday afternoons and all day Mondays
978-273-6399 is his recommended number to use at any time;
calls to 802-222-4610 are only answered when he is in the parsonage, but you may leave a message
April 19th in our vestry … Red Cross Blood Drive
May 4th in our sanctuary, the North Country Chorus spring concert, Bernstein’s “Chichester Psalms” and Ravel’s “Requiem” plus the St. Johnsbury Academy Hilltones.
May 17th in the vestry … our annual meeting. If you haven’t yet forwarded your annual report to Penny Perryman it needs to be sent now. This year’s Annual Report will be posted online (not mailed in paper form) with only a few copies printed for those who cannot access it online.
We lift up in our prayers all who struggle, all who hurt, all who grieve, all who suffer, at home, across town, and around the world. The thought of Notre Dame cathedral of Paris is a reminder of how connected all of God’s creation is, and how much we can accomplish when we come together.