Proclaiming the Good News of God in Christ
From the Bishop: Easter 2018

April 1st, 2018

bishop

….Some years ago I heard an Episcopal priest preach about resurrection at the Washington National Cathedral.  Father Andrew Wyatt said in part that belief in the resurrection happens by faith:

Not what is asserted against reason as an act of will, but what lifts us into just and compassionate strength when reason can take us no further…

This is the realm of hope.  Not what is wished for to escape our sullen despair, but what is affirmed as even now becoming true before we perceive it…

This is the realm of love.  Not what is bartered in the marketplace of personal desire, but the promotion and protection of each other far beyond mere justice … whose cost to our self is not even notice in our good will and active delight in all God’s cherished and fragile creatures.

Christ is risen.  And he can be present for us, and ours lives can be changed way beyond our hopes and dreams, if we but have the eyes of faith to look for him here.

He is risen when we gather in church parish halls every Sunday, welcoming strangers like long lost brothers and sisters, with coffee and treats and an earnest desire to connect with each other and support one another in a way that will make life better.

He is risen in our schools & workplaces when we make amends with someone we’ve hurt: when we summon the grace and courage to face our fault and say we’re sorry and set aside our self righteousness and petty need to always be right and always look good.

He is risen at our bedsides, when we have the faith to pray.  When we remember to credit thank God for the great blessings of our lives.  And perhaps even more, when we somehow find it in our hearts to pray in the worst moments of our lives.

He is risen when we can smile and laugh with a dying loved one at their sick bed.  He is risen when we shout “Alleluia” on a funeral day.

He is risen when we come to the altar rail every Sunday.  When we kneel down, and bow our heads, and dare to hope that plain old bread and plain old wine really could be transformed in this place … really could become for us food with power to nourish us like nothing we’ve tasted before, giving us forgiveness of our sins, strength in our weakness and everlasting salvation.

He is risen right here and right now.  And he is calling you by name.  Mary, Debbie, Sarah and Michael.  Anne and John and Andy and Doug.  Kurt and Melissa and Teresa and Dan.  Chase and Joe and Rosanne and Ethel.

He is calling us by name every one, inviting us to let go of everything that keeps us from knowing him, and loving him, and being with him today and every day.  He’s calling us by name and inviting us to see what happens when we look through the eyes of faith, and join our voices with angels and archangels and saints and martyrs and all the company of heaven, shouting out the news for which we long … for which we live:  Alleluia!  Christ is Risen!

+ Bishop Barker

 

[Editor] This is an excerpt from Bishop Barker’s Easter Sermon.
Click here to read the entire sermon on TNE.


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