Easter Sunday - A Reflection

As dawn breaks on this Easter Sunday morning 2020 I wonder if like me you have had a disturbed night’s sleep. My body, mind and spirit do not feel “prepared” for today. I have missed the rituals and traditions that normally lead up to today’s celebration.

I wonder if Mary and the other disciples managed to sleep that night, all those years ago. Did they toss and turn, trying to make sense of what had just happened? How did they find themselves in mourning - just a few short days after Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem? How did they begin to process the harrowing picture of Jesus dying on the cross and being hurriedly placed in the tomb?

I suspect that Mary Magdalene hadn’t really slept. In John’s Gospel we hear “it was still dark” when she went to the tomb, only to find it empty. Peter and “the other disciple” were up too and wide awake as they ran to the place where they had left Jesus body about 36 hours before.

Mary Magdelene was beside herself with grief, I wonder have you been in that place too? Exhausted, weeping, mind racing and swirling, unable to comprehend the grief of losing a loved one, no wonder Mary didn’t recognise Jesus and mistook him for the gardener.

We usually strip the church bare on Good Friday. This year, everything that is “normal” about Holy week has been stripped away; we have been unable to conduct our usual services and rituals. We missed them, but they are not of fundamental importance. The Old Testament passage for Morning Prayer on Holy Saturday was from Hosea chapter 6; verse 6 says “For I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt-offerings.”

 

My hopes and prayers for us all are:

In the darkness and confusion of these “abnormal times” we may meet once more the God who loves us, the God who sent His only Son to die and rise again for each of us, that we might remain steadfast in our love for Him.

We will be able to return to our church buildings very soon, to gather and worship as we are used to, but that in these strange and unfamiliar times we can gain a deeper knowledge of God.

 

For Christ IS Risen

He is Risen indeed Alleluia

Liturgy

Opening Prayer 

Christ yesterday and today, the beginning and the end,

 Alpha and Omega, all time belongs to him, and all ages; 

to him be glory and power, through every age and for ever. Amen.

Confession

Jesus Christ, risen Master and triumphant Lord,

we come to you in sorrow for our sins,

and confess to you our weakness and unbelief.

We have lived by our own strength, and not by the power of your resurrection.

In your mercy, forgive us. Lord, hear us and help us.

We have lived by the light of our own eyes, as faithless and not believing.

In your mercy, forgive us. Lord, hear us and help us.

We have lived for this world alone, and doubted our home in heaven.

In your mercy, forgive us. Lord, hear us and help us.

Almighty God, who forgives all who truly repent, have mercy upon us, pardon and deliver us from all our sins, confirm and strengthen us in all goodness, and keep us in eternal life; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.  

 

Reading – Matthew 28.1-10

The Peace 

The peace of the Lord be always with you.

 

Prayers

Lord our God you prepare a table before us and, although we cannot be present at your holy Eucharist, by your grace open our hearts to receive the gift of your Son, the Word made flesh.

Who on the night he was betrayed took bread and gave it to his disciples saying, “Take, eat, this is my body which is given for you – do this in remembrance of me.”

In the same way after supper he took the cup.  He gave it to them saying, “Drink this all of you- this is my blood of the new covenant which is shed for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins.  Do this in remembrance of me.”

Send your Holy Spirit upon us that, though separated by distance, we may still through faith be partakers in the benefits of Christ’s offering of his body and his blood.  This we ask through the same Jesus Christ our Saviour.  Amen.

 

We say the Lord’s Prayer together

 

Pause for quiet reflection

Thanks be to you, Lord Jesus Christ,

for all the benefits you have given me, 

for all the pains and insults you have borne for me.

Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally,

I ask you to come spiritually into my heart.

O most merciful redeemer, friend and brother,

may I know you more clearly,

love you more dearly,

and follow you more nearly, day by day. Amen.

 

Prayers

Lord, in these days of mercy,

make us quiet and prayerful;

in these days of challenge,

make us stronger in you;

in these days of emptiness,

take possession of us;

in these days of waiting, 

open our hearts to the mystery of your cross.                 Angela Ashwin

 

Hymn

Thine be the glory,

Risen, conqu'ring Son;

Endless is the victory,

 

Thou o'er death hast won;

Angels in bright raiment

Rolled the stone away,

Kept the folded grave clothes

Where Thy body lay.

Thine be the glory,

 

Lo! Jesus meets us,

Risen from the tomb;

Lovingly He greets us,

Scatters fear and gloom;

Let the church with gladness,

Hymns of triumph sing;

For her Lord now liveth,

Death hath lost its sting. 

Thine be the glory, 

 

No more we doubt Thee,

Glorious Prince of life;

Life is naught without Thee;

Aid us in our strife;

Make us more than conquerors,

Through Thy deathless love:

Bring us safe through Jordan

To Thy home above.

Thine be the glory,

 

 

Let us go in peace to love and serve the Lord  Alleluia, Alleluia

Walton Team Ministry
 

0151 525 3130

 

waltonparishteam@hotmail.co.uk

Walton Team Ministry

Walton Cornerstone

2 Liston Street,

Liverpool L4 5RJ