The next time you visit our church you will see the beautiful stained glass window behind the altar. That window tells the story of what happened on Easter morning.
Very early on Sunday morning, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome were on their way to Jesus tomb. It was soon after sunrise. The three women brought with them sweet-smelling spices to put on Jesus’ body; this was a way to honor him. As they walked, they said to each other, “There is a large stone covering the entrance of the tomb. Who will move the stone for us?”
Then the women looked and saw that the stone was already moved. The stone was very large, but it was moved away from the entrance. The women entered the tomb and saw a young man wearing a white robe. He was sitting on the right side, and the women were afraid.
But the man said, “Don’t be afraid. You are looking for Jesus from Nazareth, the one who was killed on a cross. He has risen from death. He is not here. Look, here is the place they laid him. Now go and tell his followers and Peter, “Jesus is going into Galilee. He will be there before you. You will see him there as he told you before.’”
The women were confused and shaking with fear. They left the tomb and ran away. They did not tell anyone about what happened, because they were afraid. Mark 16: 1-8. Adapted from The International Children’s Bible.
On Friday Jesus died, and his body was placed in a tomb. Some scriptures say there were guards there. But when the three women arrived on Easter Sunday morning, the tomb was open, the guard was gone, and so was Jesus! How did that happen?
You and your family might want to attend the Easter Sunrise Service on Sunday morning and see this story come to life. The service will be at 7:00, about the same time that the three women visited the tomb. Reverend Sue will remind us that ”In an ancient tomb on a starry night, God worked in secret to bring life out of death.“
If your family decides to attend the 10:00 worship service, you might want to count how many times you hear the word “Alleluia!” or “Hallelujah!” – which means ”Praise the Lord!” Neither of those words is used in worship during Lent (the six weeks before Easter.) But you’ll hear a lot of these joyful words on Easter Sunday – a day when we are grateful for the love and hope that surround us, and for the presence of Jesus, who taught us to love each other as he loved us.
Easter Sunday brings us great joy. It is a wonderful day to share your love with your family: with grandparents, cousins or friends. I hope you always remember that God loves you just as you are, and is always with you. May you share your love every day.
P.S. I ALSO hope that you are able to enjoy the Easter Egg Hunt at Squam pasture at 11:30!