Our Easter Day Worship

“Alleluia, Christ is Risen. He is Risen indeed, Alleluia”. Jesus said; “I am the resurrection and the life. Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live, and everyone who lives and believes in me, will never die”. We celebrate Christ’s resurrection and his glorious assurances of eternal life for all who believe in him. Please open this post to share in our Easter Day worship.

These Easter Flowers were arranged by Fiona at St John’s Cathedral in Hong Kong. There are two more pictures at the end of our worship.

In our church, we always have an Easter Garden and this year, Pam has prepared one for us at home. On Good Friday, it looked like this:

Today, it looks like this!

Our choir has prepared a very special celebration for us to start our worship [huge thanks to Neil, our choirmaster and organist who helped choir members overcome their anxieties in sending in sound files, and to Tony, our church warden who had the task of putting it all together!].

“Alleluia, Christ is Risen. He is Risen indeed, Alleluia”. Here is………..the Hallelujah Chorus.

Today’s Gospel: Matthew 28: 1-10. You can listen to these boys reading the Gospel or simply read it through yourself below.

The Resurrection of Jesus

After the sabbath, as the first day of the week was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb.  And suddenly there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord, descending from heaven, came and rolled back the stone and sat on it.  His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. For fear of him the guards shook and became like dead men. But the angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid; I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has been raised, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay.  Then go quickly and tell his disciples, ‘He has been raised from the dead, and indeed he is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see him.’ This is my message for you.  So they left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came to him, took hold of his feet, and worshipped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.”

Hymn: Jesus Christ is Risen Today

Jesus Christ is ris’n today, Alleluia!
our triumphant holy day, Alleluia!
who did once upon the cross Alleluia!
suffer to redeem our loss. Alleluia!

Hymns of praise then let us sing Alleluia!
unto Christ our heav’nly King, Alleluia!
who endured the cross and grave, Alleluia!
sinners to redeem and save. Alleluia!

But the pains which he endured, Alleluia!
our salvation have procured; Alleluia!
now above the sky he’s King, Alleluia!
where the angels ever sing. Alleluia!

An Easter Reflection: from Rev. Jane Cresswell

Easter Sunday holds many memories from different parishes in which I’ve worshipped and served – the crackling of dawn bonfires; gathering in the dark outside an empty church as snowflakes fell; the lighting of the Paschal candle; the soaring beauty of the Exultet being sung; birds singing over Tappa’s mound; eating a variety of parish breakfasts; the glorious Hallelujah chorus epitomising Easter joy.  

In so many ways this Easter will be different – no shared celebrations … or should I more accurately say, no gathered celebrations?  Because we will still be sharing the celebration, each in our own home, as we rejoice together in the good news that Christ is risen and has overcome the power of death and hell.  

As always, we will remember our loved ones who have gone before us and give thanks that they share in Christ’s resurrection life in the new dawn of eternity.  We will remember the gift of new life in Christ into which we have entered in the present, transforming our hearts and lives, and giving us courage and hope and strength to face tomorrow.

The poem I often place in the porch at church during Eastertide seems particularly apt this year, and so I offer it to you.  God Bless.  The Lord is risen indeed.  Alleluia!

Poem by Janet Morley, Christian Aid (Bread of Tomorrow, SPCK 1992)

An Anthem: Love is Come Again. (You can follow the words below)

Now the green blade riseth from the buried grain,
Wheat that in dark earth many days has lain;
Love lives again, that with the dead has been:
Love is come again, like wheat that springeth green. 

In the grave they laid him, love whom men had slain,
Thinking that never he would wake again.
Laid in the earth like grain that sleeps unseen:
Love is come again, like wheat that springeth green.
 

Forth he came at Easter, like the risen grain,
He that for three days in the grave had lain.
Quick from the dead my risen Lord is seen:
Love is come again, like wheat that springeth green.
 

When our hearts are wintry, grieving, or in pain,
Thy touch can call us back to life again;
Fields of our hearts that dead and bare have been:
Love is come again, like wheat that springeth green.

Our Easter Prayers: In joy and hope, let us pray to the Lord.

The Angel said “Do not be afraid”  Lord, I hand over to You those things that make me so afraid. Resurrect the parts of my faith which are constrained by fear.

 The Angel said “I know that you are looking for Jesus”. Lord, when my soul is searching, help me know the answer to every longing can be found in You.

The Angel said “He is not here; for he has been raised” Lord, lift my head, my heart and my soul that I may live a resurrection life this and every day.

The Angel said “Come, see the place where he lay” Lord, each day you invite me into real revelations.  Forgive me for sometimes rushing about and forgetting to come and see for myself…You, Your Word, Your insights.

The Angel said “Then go quickly and tell his disciples”. Lord, help me to be a bold and gracious witness to your truth that I may play my part in creating your kingdom here on earth.

Lord, in your mercy, hear my prayer

Lord, we pray that you may fill us with the joy of your glorious and life-giving resurrection…

As we come to terms with self isolation and our current constrained reality, may we feel strength in the good news of Easter

As we see those around us with a new perspective, grant us humility to be subject to one another in Christian love

As we think of those who are sick, the weak and the dying, may the light of your presence comfort and strengthen them

As we mourn for those who have died, may they rise in the glory of your kingdom.

Lord, as your death has recalled us to life, so may your continual resurrected presence in us  raise us to eternal joy.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Christ is risen; let us arise in him

Christ enters new life; let us live in him

Christ has come forth from the tomb

The powers of evil are overcome.

In Christ a new creation is come to birth; Alleluia 

Lord, make us new, Alleluia. Amen

A Topical Easter Hymn:

‘This Easter Celebration’ (sung to the tune of ‘The Church is One Foundation’]

Notices

  1. A very Happy Eastertide to all our community. For all the disappointments, frustrations, worries and sadnesses of our current situation, Easter is a wonderful opportunity for us to renew our commitment to being more Christ-like in caring for one other: “Go and do likewise”. We can’t offer you coffee and simnel cake this year but you can respond to our worship below if you feel the need!
  2. Every Wednesday evening whilst we are at home, Jane and Suzanne are leading us for Compline (Evening Prayer) using Zoom. We meet online at 8:45pm with Compline beginning at 9:00pm and finishing by 9:20pm. This is a lovely opportunity for us to come together. If you would like to join in, please email your request to Jim Oliver who will also help you if you need to install Zoom on your computer; it really is simple!
  3. The next online worship from our church will be next Sunday (19th April). In the meantime our website home page has details of other online worship opportunities both within our diocese and beyond.

Blessing

May the power of the cross, the joy of the resurrection and the presence of our risen Lord be in our hearts and lives, now and always.

Final Hymn: Thine be the Glory

Stay safe and a very Happy Eastertide.

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