An Easter Message

Apr 17, 2022 | Clergy Corner

Dear St. Paul’s Family,

Our first celebration of Easter will occur as the sun sets tonight. The Liturgy of the Great Vigil of Easter is a movement from darkness to light; from death to resurrection life. It is an appropriate way to begin our Easter celebration because it embodies a certain truth about Easter that is often overlooked.
Christ is risen while it is still dark.
John’s gospel reminds us that “Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the tomb.”
Mary Magdalene did not come to the tomb when the sun was up. Mary Magdalene did nothing to help remove the stone. It had already been done… in the darkness. 
What new life is springing forth from the dark places of our lives? 
                                         From the darkness of grief?
                                                    From the darkness of guilt or shame?
From the darkness of a medical diagnosis?
                                                                        From the darkness of doubt or indifference?
                                                                                  From the darkness of a troubled relationship?
Where is Christ entering into our darkness and raising up something new… if we only had eyes to see?
Reflecting on my own life and year of transition, I must say that while there has been excitement around our move back to Wilmington and being called to St. Paul’s, there has also been the darkness of grief in our family as we left one loving community and joined a new one. As a family this year, we have had dark moments navigating the move of children, vocations, and a sense of belonging into a new setting. But, I am reminded that Christ is raised out of the darkness.  Living within the darkness of these moments allowed for the possibility of something new to be born. Now there are new, budding friendships and all kinds of opportunities that would never have been possible had we not experienced the discomfort of the darkness. Had we not grieved the death of our old life. This is why it is important to remember that resurrection is not resuscitation. Resurrection is not looking back and trying to resuscitate what was; in my own life and ministry, in yours, or in the life of St. Paul’s. 
Resurrection is all about a new thing, rising up out of darkness and death.
So, dear ones, where is your darkness? Where is there death in your life? Dare I say that this is where resurrection may be happening? Do you believe this? 
Alleluia! Christ is risen.
Happy Easter!