Thursday, March 29, 2018

From Mother Vicki

Easter 2018
Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!
The strife is o’er, the battle done;
The victory of life is won;
The song of triumph has begun.
Episcopal Hymnal 208
Words: Latin, 1695; tr. Francis Pott (1832-1909)

Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
On Sunday, March 25th, we began Holy Week by celebrating Palm Sunday and our Lord’s triumphant entry into Jerusalem riding on a donkey.  This is the week in which we follow Jesus through all the twists and turns of his Passion: with the crowd we shout, “Hosanna,” but just a few days later we will shout, “Crucify him.”  We linger at the table as Our Lord washes the feet of his disciples and institutes the Sacrament of Holy Communion and then agonize with him in the Garden of Gethsemane as he prays, “Father, if it be your will, take this cup from me.”  We watch painfully as Judas betrays him, and as Peter--Peter the Rock--denies him.  We listen to Herod and Pilate as they question him and ponder his silence.  We are distressed as he is mocked and scourged.  And then there is the long walk to Golgotha, the place of the Skull, where with breaking hearts we watch as he is crucified between two common criminals.  We are numb with grief as his body is taken down and laid in the tomb.

But that is not the end of the story.  On Easter Sunday, April 1st, we will rejoice in his miraculous Resurrection from the dead--Jesus Christ’s triumph over the forces of evil that thought they could destroy him.  The Love of God has broken the bonds of death.

Holy Week and Easter invite us to rethink our relationship with Christ and to allow our lives, no matter how we ourselves have denied or betrayed God, to be transformed by the great gift of Christ’sAnchor love for us.

We invite you to worship with us this Holy Week and Easter and to experience for yourself that profound walk from the cross to the empty tomb.  This Easter Sunday will be particularly special for Saint John’s as we baptize an infant into Christ’s Body, the Church.  For your convenience, we have enclosed an Easter Offering envelope.
Lord, by the stripes which wounded thee,
From death’s dread sting thy servants free,
That we may live and sing to thee,
In Christ and with love,

The Reverend Canon Victoria Sirota

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