We've made it to a big week in the life of the church; this past Sunday, we celebrated Jesus' king-like entrance into Jerusalem, and then journeyed with him to the cross.
There are many ways to share more deeply in the holy week journey this week--on Maundy Thursday at 7:30 p.m. in the sanctuary, on Good Friday at 12:10 p.m. in the sanctuary.
And, in Easter Eve, come join us for the great Easter Vigil--one of the oldest traditions of the Christian faith. We'll mark the vigil with a prayer pilgrimage, encountering stories of salvation since creation, and celebrating resurrection with song and sacrament. Several of you from our worship community have helped design the experience, and it promises to be rich. The "journey" starts any time between 7:30 & 9 p.m., at the firepit on the church plaza.
Then, of course, we come to Easter Sunday--a celebration of resurrection. Of love overcoming everything. Of getting our joy back.
The story begins with Mary doing what she were supposed to: taking care of the body of a friend and teacher who'd been executed by the Roman state. But she didn't find what she expected at the tomb that morning.
Responding first with concern--as if Jesus' body had been stolen--she finally came to realized that something wildly different was happening when Jesus himself appeared, calling her by name.
I love to imagine what that moment must have been like--that "aha" moment when Mary was jolted out of her grief and awakened to the reality of Christ risen. (Usually, I don't like to be proven wrong; I suspect that, in this instance, it would be so worth it...)
Where she expected to find death, she found life--and the living Christ called her by name. My sense is that everything was different on the other side, having been named and known by one whose power transcended death. As if walking from a black-and-white world into Technicolor reality, Mary came face to face--made contact--with a whole new reality.
May it be the same for us this Easter.