Dear friends and members of Resurrection,
Welcome to our newest parish communication!
Often our regular weekly e-mail doesn't allow me the space to share some of my thoughts and reflections with you. Now I can do that from time-to-time with this new feature we are calling "From the Rector . . ."
I hope you will enjoy it and provide me your own feedback and comments about the world going on around us.
As part of my participation on the Emergency Planning Committee of the diocese, I have been presenting a program called the Emergency Prepared Church, which simply asks the questions "What if" and "are we prepared". This is specifically about developing plans in our churches to ask and answer these two questions while in the process of developing actual plans for prevention and how to deal with emergencies and disasters.
This week in our part of the country, we are promoting severe weather awareness by reviewing our plans to respond to watches and warnings for severe weather at home as families, at work in our work places and in all other places (like church) where we may have to react and respond to severe weather. So, my point in all of this is to emphasize the need for all of us to a have a plan at home to answer these same questions: what if there is a fire, ice storm, tornado, flood or other natural or manmade event that threatens our lives and properties; are we ready?
I am pleased with what has already been done and what will be done at Resurrection church. The purchase and placement of an AED along with CPR training, and plans for completing an Emergency Plan that helps us to know what to do when things happen at church, are many steps ahead of most churches who have not yet begun to address safety and awareness issues. We will soon have weather radios in the church, a knox box installed, so the fire service can enter the building without breaking a door or window, and other simple plans that will help Resurrection parish be ready when bad things happen.
Look for more news and updates for our emergency preparedness as we gather momentum.
A reflection on Holy Week
As we prepare individually and as a church for the coming Holy Week, I encourage everyone to participate in as many of the evening events as possible. More than any other religious set of holidays, Holy Week and Easter represent the journey of faith that we all walk as Christians. The story is rich and deep with soulful encounters that permeate from Jesus' entrance into Jerusalem through sharing in the last meal, to spiritually emphasizing with the passion and crucifixion, ultimately to experience the great joy of resurrection.
All services during the week start at 7 pm. Monday and Tuesday are quiet, reflective and solemn Rite-I settings of the Holy Eucharist. Wednesday, a service of Tenebrae (lights diminishing to darkness) will be offered that will add some quiet drama before we celebrate the Triduum (last three days), which is marked by Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and the Great Vigil of Easter. Thursday will start with a light "Agape" meal at 6 pm and the Eucharistic service to follow will include the humble practice of washing feet and beginning the "Great Watch" at the altar of repose which continues all night until 7pm Friday morning. I do hope all who attend Maundy Thursday will consider participating in the foot washing, as this is one of the most gracious and humbling physical things that we do for one another in this special holy service (look past the uneasiness of washing someone else's feet or having your feet washed by someone else, and consider the spiritual act that extends back to Christ himself and the washing of the disciple's feet).Good Friday will be our time to recount the passion and crucifixion of Jesus as we venerate the cross, there will be no communion of bread and wine as we spiritually abstain from the sacrament until the Great Vigil. Saturday evening is probably one of the most celebrated drama's of the Christian tradition with the lighting of the new fire, retelling of the creation story and the renewal of our Baptismal vows. We bring back the great A's and welcome in the day of resurrection and share in a lite reception as a parish family. Sunday continues as the first day of Resurrection with all the joy and celebration that has been missed through Lent. This too will be a day of reception following the service along with a grand o'l Easter Egg Hunt.
Debbie and I are so honored to share these days with you as our first time through these events with the Resurrection Church family. I am grateful for all the hard work that will have been done by many people who make the celebrations successful. This is truly a time of great fellowship and rejoicing.
Blessings to all at this Holy time. . . .