April 12th, 2020 John 20:1-18

Easter is a new beginning but it doesn’t feel like it.

Mary Magdalene is asked twice; why are you weeping?

First by the two angels in the tomb, and then by Jesus whom she thinks is the gardener.
Her worry and why she is upset is that Jesus is dead and to add insult to injury, they have moved his body. Therefore she wants to know where his dead body is.

That is why she goes to Peter and the Beloved Disciple that the stone has been rolled away and his body has been taken away.

Her whole focus and hope is to find Jesus’ dead body.

This reminds me of the story of Jesus and the ten lepers, Luke 17:11-17, a Thanksgiving Gospel.

Of the ten only the Samaritan came back to give Jesus Thanks, while the other nine, we would think went to the priest then back to their lives. Mary Magdalene would after she found the body of Jesus would be going back to her life.

The Samaritan cannot go back to the way he was before he became a leper. Easter is not just finding out where his body can be found.

Then what are we expecting, something for Easter, beyond, something different.
And maybe not be so much about us as individuals but as members of families and community.

This is also about care for one another, even though we cannot be together as we want or prefer.

And we are not all the same even though we are experiencing the same things at least in general.

This reminds me of a clergy event I took part in a number of years ago. This was when there an uncertainty about the role and function of priests in changing times. The Rev. Deacon Sandy Cotton was the theme speaker of the one day event. He had us take part in an exercise.

We were each given a sheet of paper with about 30 faces with a different emotion written below each. Emogis if you will. We were asked to draw a circle around the emotion which described how we felt about the previous six months, and a square around how we felt right then in the present, and a triangle for the next six months. Then go talk to one another about it, and compare. Sandy Cotton then said, that he would give wine to any two who had the same three symbols around the same three faces.

Sandy mentioned that when he did this with another group of professionals, they were upset when no one won the wine. None in our group won wine either.

We may be surprised if at this time we have different emotional reactions to our present situation, thus our care and support is even more necessary because of this, and we may not realize how valuable our contact by phone or e-mail may be to the person we contact.

It is interesting that Jesus tells Mary to go and talk to his brothers, and she goes to them and says; I have seen the Lord.

Jesus gave Mary a task to do, and it meant taking the message to others, Easter like all gifts is not for us alone but to be shared with others, and so we are finding new and creative ways at this time to live out the Easter message.

Your may have other thoughts about this, and you can e-mail me if you would like,

May this Easter still be a Holy and Blessed time for you and all you love.


The Gathering of the Community

Easter 2020