O God of unchangeable power and eternal light:
Look favorably on your whole Church,
that wonderful and sacred mystery;
by the effectual working of your providence,
carry out in tranquility the plan of salvation;
let the whole world see and know that things
which were cast down are being raised up,
and things which had grown old are being made new,
and that all things are being brought to their perfection
by the one through whom all things were made,
Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Easter IS Coming! We’re almost there. It is a holy time of year for many of our friends and neighbors as well. We are still in Passover time. My editorial from last week’s San Mateo Daily Journal was reprinted this week in the Jewish Weekly. I have heard from many of our Jewish friends how important it is that we Christians recognize that this can be a sensitive and difficult time for them https://www.jweekly.com/2021/03/26/christian-pastor-this-holy-week-im-giving-up-antisemitism/ Our friends from the Peninsula Multifaith Coalition remind us it is a holy time for Hindus too https://youtu.be/a0HGV8Ark44.
This is still the week of Christ’s Passion, his great suffering and his great love for us, love that is stronger than death. As I write this, I have been watching the trial of Derek Chauvin, and the painful and unseemly spectacle of children testifying to what they witnessed, the death of one man at the hands of another, empowered by the state. A reminder that crucifixions continue, and a challenge for us to make sure they don’t. George Floyd did not have to die. Before we get to Easter, we still have to grapple with Good Friday.
I was so moved on Tuesday when the current members of the reading group read the final chapter of our latest read, Know My Name by Chanel Miller. It was divided into eight voices, and they took turns reading it aloud. It was like a modern day reading of the Passion, a powerful narrative that took place locally, a story that many women experience and that does not always get told. Thank you, readers, for sharing this story out loud and for your willingness to share it with us. You don’t have to have read the book to appreciate the testimony. If you want to deepen your spiritual life during Holy Week, listen to these women read this testimony. Note: There is graphic material in this testimony. https://youtu.be/lN7NYdcl-q0
I am raising these instances because they are our reality. Also because I believe Resurrection is and can and will be our reality. After a year of sheltering in place I know we are ready for resurrection. This year we are looking at Mark’s version of the Easter story, 16:1-8. It’s a simple and direct version, reminding us that we will find the Risen One “in Galilee” – in our lives just as we are living them. Between now and Sunday, look around for signs of resurrection. Start now. Don’t wait until then, and don’t stop after Easter. As always at Island United Church, come as you are on Easter Sunday – in Easter finery with hats, or in your bunny slippers and bathrobe. Be part of our resurrection celebration. Bring bread and cup for communion. Be prepared for trumpets and alleluias and new beginnings.
Rev. Jim Mitulski