How are you settling into the new pace and style of living? I hope you are adapting well to these strange times. As hard as it seems right now, like all things even this shall pass. Today is Palm Sunday but it’s also Passion time. The word Passion comes from the Latin phrase to endure. Jesus certainly endured during this time as we are called to endure now. I trust you are doing more than simply enduring and are finding new ways to enjoy and thrive in this enforced furlough. To this week’s notices then ….
STAYING IN TOUCH
Just a reminder from me that there are various ways to stay in touch during this time. Please let me know if you’d like to be added to our community What’s app group, or this email list. If you know of folks who do not receive this update please share it with them and ask them to contact me to be added. I am currently sending this to around 25 of you, I’m sure there are more who have an email address that I just don’t know.
Thanks to a massive remote effort from the Courier team the magazine is now available for you to read at home, please follow the link below…
THIS WEEKS SERVICE
This week Helen sounds a little bit squeaky when she sings, I’ve tried 2 in 1 and WD40 but to no avail so to spare you my tuneless wailings please find below the link to the sermon and prayers followed by links to two songs from YouTube you may like to join I with at the end.
https://youtu.be/4QLz_anKKgY - The Service itself
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h3a8fTTrAdE - All Glory, laud and honour.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tK6XuYhL7JI - Make way for Christ the King
NEXT WEEK’s SERVICE
Our service for Easter Sunday will be led by Tristan, we are working on the technology for that right now. If any other local preacher would like to record a service in the coming weeks please do let me know J
SOME SAD NEWS
Simon has produced some reflections which I have shared with you all by e-mail. If you have access to our or the circuit’s Facebook page you will also find them there. In due course I will share these and other devotions via our blog page; I still need to find the time for that. If you haven’t received them please let me know and I will share them with you directly.
JAM & IMPACT
We continue to meet each Sunday at 10:30 am where we share in some remote craft for the younger JAM members and some study and questions for the older IMPACT folks. If you have children in the family that would like to join in please get in touch we meet via Zoom.
Have you been passed the Church on your daily exercise? If you have you may have seen our digital sign is now displaying a giant rainbow amongst it’s other encouraging slides. Take a look if you exercise that way J
That’s all I have to share today, if you have something you’d like circulated do let me know!
God Bless you all!
- Hits: 528
Dear One and All,
I usually concentrate on Palm Sunday this morning but today I am going to look at the Institution of the Lord's Supper ( Mt 26:26-30) It is situated at the heart of the Passion narrative. Judas has arranged to betray Christ and Jesus tells of Peter's betrayal of Christ through his denials. The story gathers pace as Jesus is arrested and then begins the long ordeal of trials and beatings, betrayals and humiliations. This Jesus endures.
" Take eat this is my body"
I would have liked to be a fly on the wall as Jesus said this. I wonder how the disciples reacted and oh to see the look on their faces. I suppose one or two of them might have thought that Jesus was being opaque once again. Others may not have been sure what he was saying, while others still, may have had an inkling. I have always thought that perhaps Judas might have had an insight into who Jesus truly is. And because Jesus didn't measure-up to what Judas wanted or hoped for then betrayal was an option.
I can remember as a child being revolted by this statement. It made me wonder if Jesus' followers were cannibals. I know there are some, even now, who will not take Holy communion because they cannot rid themselves from this impression. I can remember at theological college being told to 'rip and tear' the consecrated loaf or roll and if one was using a wafer, to snap it. The symbolism of Jesus' actions is to show how he was to be treated and ultimately in death, to be ripped and torn from this world. For me as a minister, the Words of Institution never fail to move me and the privilege of presiding at the Lord's Supper is acutely humbling. In this time of lockdown, I am profoundly aware of being separated from all of you in our unity in celebrating the Holy Communion and sharing the impact of the various liturgies created for Maundy Thursday and Easter Sunday. It is as though this wretched virus has torn us apart, but we know, in Christ, we have our unity and hold to it.
" Then he took the cup and after giving thanks he gave it them saying 'drink from it all of you; for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins".
Jesus' body was to be broken and his blood shed. Blood was seen as an individual's 'life force'. In brokenness and suffering this was set alongside forgiveness. Even as Jesus faced the final act of his earthly life, there was no place for condemnation but an invitation to be forgiven.
When the world returns to normality in a post-Covid19 setting, it will not take long for people to be condemned. Politicains accusing others and being accused of failures, scientists of being wrong or unclear; of the recklessly irresponsible folk who gather together despite being warned not too, for having blood on their hands. There will be blame. Christians need to recall and give expression to the need for reconciliation and forgiveness as this will imitate Christ's words.
The Lord's Supper, the Eucharist, the Holy Communion call it what you will is for the Christian a symbol of the power to endure. We may all share in Christ's brokenness and suffering, none more so than at present. Nevertheless, we also know that Jesus' message of love overcoming every obstacle, even death on a cross, endures. Take courage and strength therefore, for in our suffering Christ has overcome and nothing will separate us from that.
Revd Simon H Leigh: Superintendent minister Plymouth and Devonport Circuit.
- Hits: 509
Page 7 of 7