The Cold Springer - Week of April 21, 2019
Sunday, April 21st, 2019 - Easter Sunday
Holy Week is an entering into Jesus’ death through baptism so that “just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.” (Romans 6:4b)
Holy Week begins with Palm Sunday and includes the Triduum: Maundy Thursday (when we remember the first Eucharist and take part in foot washing), Good Friday (the somber reflection of Christ’s death, the prelude to the good news that Christ has conquered death and sin) and the Easter Vigil (the kindling of the light of Christ and the first celebration of his resurrection.)
The origins of Holy Week are found in the practices of Cyril, Bishop of Jerusalem, who died in 386; fortunately a pilgrim - a nun named Egeria - took part in this pre-Easter ritual and recorded her experiences. As pilgrims poured into the city for their baptism on Easter Sunday morning, Cyril would lead them out to sites that were significant to the events leading up to Golgotha, the place of the crucifixion. With prayer, a dramatic reading of the story associated with the place, the singing of hymns, and symbolic actions, these events were experienced again by pilgrims. By the time of their baptism, Paul’s powerful words of dying in order to have new life could be appreciated. They were truly raised with Christ, they felt, because they had walked through his death in their baptism.
Bishop Cyril should be honored as the patron saint of church educators! He knew the importance of the Christian story in forming a people, and he moved it right into their lives by involving them in experiences of drama, worship and prayer during Holy Week. Later, during the Great Fifty Days of Easter, he helped the newly baptized reflect on the meaning of those stories for their new lives in Jesus Christ.
Learning the stories and reflecting on them is what we do at St. John's. It’s how every service that hold in the sanctuary begins - listening to the lessons. It’s what we do in Children’s Chapel when the teacher shared the Shares the Godly Play story. The lessons in Little Saints and Elements of Faith are built around the stories of Jesus and the stories he knew from the Hebrew Bible.
All the stories of our sacred scriptures lead to this week and to Jesus’ grace filled resurrection. But that is not the end, it’s not the final chapter. When we close the book and receive an Easter blessing this Sunday, the story continues with us. We are writing the ongoing story of faith, hope and love.
May God bless you all this week and the Easter week’s to come!
Peace and All Good!
The Rev. Jesse Lebus
Holy Week 2019
Maundy Thursday: 7:30 PM: Holy Eucharist Rite II and Foot Washing
Good Friday: 12:00 PM and 7:30 PM: Good Friday Liturgy
The Great Vigil of Easter: Saturday, April 20, 2019 7:30 PM
Easter Sunday: Sunday, April 21. Services at 8 AM, 10 AM and 11:30.
Easter Sunday there will be no Sunday School,
but there will be nursery care at the
10 & 11:30 AM services.
April 28th @ 10am
St. John's Church
Following an ancient tradition (alright, not entirely ancient) the Sunday after Easter Sunday is the day we celebrate our young members. This year's Youth Sunday will feature an offering by the Junior Choir, readers from our Confirmation Class, and a sermon by high school senior, Raffi Sanna. Children from the Elements of Faith class will usher at the 10am service and bring the Eucharistic elements forward. The Children's Chapel will process with the clergy and choir and all children are encouraged to stay in the "Big Church." There will be nursery care. This is a great day for our church and we hope that all young families will attend.
Flowering the Cross
Please bring your lovely spring offerings to church this Sunday for the Flowering of the Cross. Daffodils, tulips, quince, forsythia, hyacinth, cherry...so many plants are blooming this week. We look forward to transforming that old wooden cross into a sign of blossoming grace and hope.
Call for Volunteers
If you have a desire to help grow our wonderful youth formation program please reach out to a Sunday School teacher or a member of our clergy. There are requirements! The time to set aside some consecutive Sunday mornings (as few as three). A desire to see children grow in the faith. The willingness to grow your own faith through this experience. No theology degree neccesary.