For this is the Passover feast. When Christ, the true Lamb of God, is slain whose blood consecrates the homes of all the faith full. Glory to you forever.
Easter morning, April, 2020
The field was just a few hundred meters, but the little lamb heard us in the distance, started making his cute noises and ran eagerly towards us for attention. See me! See me! See me! It greeted us pure and innocently and chatted a bit, but was called back to mom. Beeh! Beeh! Mom watching and calling in the distance to see her little one coming back safely.
We woke up at 6 a.m. to watch the sunrise at an open place near our home at the arboretum at Wageningen There you have a nice overview of the landscape we know so well: Randwijk. We recognize the houses by their trees in their front yards at the other side of the river Rhine. The ferry that we took so many times is still at the shore at this early hour of the day. A single car is driving over the dike in the distance and we can follow it easily in this fresh morning landscape.
A brand new Easterday amidst a crisis.
Blessed are you, Lord God of all creation,
to you be glory and praise for ever.
Your steadfast love extends to the heavens
and your faithfulness never ceases.
Illuminate our hearts with your wisdom
and strengthen our lives with your word,
for you are the fountain of life;
in your light we see true light.
Blessed be God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
All Blessed be God for ever.
I wonder for myself, what new words or insight can be brought into Easter, as it is celebrated for around 2000 years. What words have not yet been said? Which perspective not yet highlighted? What is the purpose of Easter? What can it bring us today? But I enthusiasticly enjoy the sunrise!
All Sing, choirs of heaven! Let saints and angels sing!
Around God’s throne exult in harmony!
Now Jesus Christ is risen from the grave!
Salute your King in glorious symphony!
Sing, choirs of earth! Behold, your light has come!
The glory of the Lord shines radiantly!
Lift up your hearts, for Christ has conquered death!
The night is past, the day of life is here!
Sing, Church of God! Exult with joy outpoured!
The gospel trumpets tell of victory won!
Your Saviour lives; he’s with you evermore!
Let all God’s people sound the long Amen!
Judith and I walked the few miles home. The birds waited silently. At the top of the trees, the sun appeared and we could see the shadow of night fading away and with the coming of the sun, the birds lifted their voices and called each other and their songs became a symphony of joy.
The Unseen God
It is right and good that with hearts and minds and voices
we should praise you, Father almighty, the unseen God,
through your only Son, Jesus Christ our Lord,
who has saved us by his death,
paid the price of Adam’s sin,
and reconciled us once again to you.
All[Glory to you for ever.]
Night truly blessed, when hatred is cast out,
peace and justice find a home, and heaven is joined to earth
and all creation reconciled to you.
Let us pray that we may reign with the risen Christ in glory.
Lord of all life and power,
who through the mighty resurrection of your Son
overcame the old order of sin and death
to make all things new in him:
grant that we, being dead to sin
and alive to you in Jesus Christ,
may reign with him in glory;
to whom with you and the Holy Spirit
be praise and honour, glory and might,
now and in all eternity.
Jesus Christ is risen from the dead.
He has defeated the powers of death.
Jesus turns our sorrow into dancing.
He has the words of eternal life.
Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew
All Glory to you, O Lord.
The first Easter morning at sunrise around 33 AD.
Now after the Sabbath, toward the dawn of the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. And for fear of him the guards trembled and became like dead men. But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and behold, he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him. See, I have told you.” So they departed quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came up and took hold of his feet and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me.”
This is the Gospel of the Lord.
All Praise to you, O Christ.
And I suddenly get a bit of an answer to that question. What is the meaning of Easter today, amidst a crisis? And I realize that we need to hear it, year after year, day after day: Do not be afraid. Not all questions are answered for we still see in a mirror as the trees at the riverside or a silhouette on a tree trunk.
Warm Easter Greetings, with joy and anticipation.
(Prayers and readings taken from An Easter Liturgy, from Common Worship.)
This harmony feels a bit as if heaven and earth meet. We all have to find new ways and rituals these day’s. What are you adding new that you appreciate and discover this year? Feel free to share.