First, THANK YOU, PASTORS! I see you! You are working extra hours and carrying heavier burdens than most Lenten seasons. Thank you. I see you learning new technologies fast enough to inspire software companies to make upgrades in the middle of the chaos. I see you making phone calls for hours on end to check in on members. I see you connecting leaders to each other to create safety nets of care and communication. I see you convening committee after committee to make decisions faster than the virus. I see you worrying about the stability of your congregation’s finances. I see you weeping and grieving over the losses in your communities. I see youcaring for your own children and parents while caring for your flock. I see you praying. Thank you. You are beloved children of God called to this particular time and place and you are enough. You are beautiful and beloved. Thank you for your gifts!

Dear Friends,

We are living through the heart of our Christian faith these days. Jesus of Nazareth could have been remembered as a wise prophet. He could have been remembered as a tender leader. He could have been remembered as a benevolent friend. And he could have been only remembered in dust tomes written and stored in lofty libraries, had these days of Holy Week not occurred. It is in the body of Jesus, broken and poured out and shared with all, unto even death, that we are invited and poised to receive the most brilliant miracle of eternity, the resurrection of Christ. Alleluia! Alleluia!

This Easter, we have added opportunity to reflect on the disruptive story of Jesus’ resurrection as we are living through the disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic. Similar to the early disciples, we are locked away from people and practices that we normally turn to for both grief and celebration. Similar to the early disciples, our emotions may run high, and then low, and there are many doubts among as well. And, similar to the early disciples, Jesus finds us where we are. Jesus seeks us out and reminds us that even death does not get the last word. Even death cannot separate us from LOVE. And LOVE is not just the last word, it is the only word.

May your Eastertide be filled with LOVE! May you be surprised by God’s grace and abundance! May we rejoice together in the risen Christ who reminds us over and over again what LOVE can do!

Easter Blessings! Alleluia! Alleluia!

 

Rev. Brigit Stevens
Executive Conference Minister