The second Sunday sometimes called Low Sunday and also the Octave of Easter, (the eighth day).
I hope this Easter week has had times of contentment in the midst of our on-going support of one another by keeping distance.
The sermon that I have attached for tomorrow does not make much direct reference to the challenges our country is facing but at the heart of what I have written lies my sense that the gift of patience is something we need to pray for, for ourselves and those around us struggling now with the uncertainty about how long this will go on for. It is noticeable in the daily government briefings that journalists reflect a wider desire to know what is going to happen next. I find myself grateful (and this is a philosophical not a political observation) that like the scientists advising them the politicians have accepted that there things we just don’t know, and we have to wait to know them before further decisions can be made. There is an uncomfortable honesty in that.
We can offer prayer in the midst of honest discomfort – telling God what we are feeling, praying for healing for those who suffer, comfort for those who mourn, protection for those who serve, wisdom for those who govern, friendship for those who are lonely, support for those who are in need or afraid for their financial future. In this season of resurrection, may we pray too, for eyes to see the gifts hidden in this time, hearts to cherish them, and wisdom to carry them towards the future.
With that in mind, I have a suggestion that looks forward to the opening of our churches whenever that might be. Traditionally leading up to Holy Week churches have displayed stations of the cross; but there is also a series of “Stations of the Resurrection” referring to the various stories of Jesus’ resurrection appearances. I would like us to create some such stations to place in church when the time comes that we open again. These might include artwork, photos, written reflections, symbols and images that the resurrection stories evoke, or that reflect moments of life, and things to cherish in our own experience of this time, our own resurrection moments through this period. I will attach a list of the “stations” now and will continue to reflect on them, and how they might inspire our creativity in connecting the hope offered by the resurrection with all that we are experiencing now, in days to come.