Church of England Diocese of Exeter West Worlington

Homily for Easter Day

4 Apr 2021, 9 a.m.

Own up. A question I ask every Easter Day. Who has had a sneaky Easter Egg? – before breakfast! The temptation is there. Depending on your fixation you either have a nice stack of them waiting to be worked through, or you are waiting two or three days and then you visit the shops to buy the eggs at greatly reduced prices.

Easter is associated with new life. We see it all around us. In our orchard a pear tree has a single blossom opened up, the grass is growing, lambs are in the fields. And, to top it all, I found an egg (a real one!) on the path leading down the garden.

Now, back to my murder mystery that I finished with yesterday. We are at the last page and we find that today Jesus has risen from the dead. Alleluia! He claimed that after three days the temple would be rebuilt, and his claim was scoffed at because the Temple had taken scores of years to build. His listeners had not understood. Jesus had been talking about himself, not the Temple built of bricks and mortar. After three days he would be rebuilt. After three days he would rise from the dead.

On that first Easter morning his discovery was met with uncertainty. Suspecting that he was the gardener he was asked where the body of Jesus had been taken. It was when he spoke that recognition occurred. After that first encounter the news started to spread. First to the disciples and then outward.

The disciples were overjoyed. We can imagine their excitement. But there was one missing. Thomas, who would go down in history as Doubting Thomas, was not there. When he was told he did not believe. He needed to see with his own eyes.

But now I am in danger of going too far ahead. The joy of the Risen Lord fills me with enthusiasm to continue but I must stop. That book has suddenly got larger with extra chapters added. Turning to the last page revealed more still to read.

What can follow the good news that we share today. Jesus, once crucified and buried, has now risen from the tomb. Death is no more. Jesus has risen. It is a message of hope. It is a mainstay of our faith. We can go out into the streets and lanes and broadcast that Jesus is Risen!

Yes, Jesus Christ has Risen, Alleluia!

Happy Easter

Collect for Easter Day

Lord of all life and power,

who through the mighty resurrection of your Son

overcame the old order of sin and death

to make all things new in him:

grant that we, being dead to sin

and alive to you in Jesus Christ,

may reign with him in glory;

to whom with you and the Holy Spirit

be praise and honour, glory and might,

now and in all eternity.