There is a sense in which the cross of Christ takes care of our past, and the resurrection of Christ secures our future! Jesus died to cover our sins and Jesus rose so that we might live eternally. Obviously the two go together. His death and resurrection are central to the Christian faith and to God’s plan of salvation. We who are “Methodists” see salvation as a gift of grace that begins with God reaching out to us (prevenient grace) and our trusting Christ (justifying grace) and our growing in Christ and surrendering to His will (sanctifying grace) and our dying and entering the heavenly realm (glorifying grace). It is an ongoing process whereby God is perfecting us in love and in the end we go to live in the realm of God’s perfect love.
It is important to realize that the holy days of this season of the year are not just excuses to celebrate, although they are worthy of our observance. They are reminders of what God has done for us in Christ. These events are not only historic but also dynamic, in that, they continue to impact our lives today!
We are fortunate to have stained glass windows that tell the story every time we walk into the sanctuary. We have the choirs telling the story of God’s grace and love in their musical presentations. We have messages based on the biblical accounts. We offer prayers of thanksgiving to God for what He has done. We sing hymns and songs of praise that lift high the cross and communicate the joy of resurrection!
I hope you will join us for the beautiful cantata (musical with narration) that will be presented on Palm Sunday (April 1) by our choir and symphony orchestra. For this centennial year we have reached back and picked a favorite of choir and congregation, “Footprints in the Sand.” We are also celebrating with an Easter Egg Hunt and Parade for Children held on our church grounds immediately following dinner on the grounds with our church family.
Join us for our other Holy Week services. Thursday (April 5) at 7:00 p.m. we remember “The Last Supper” conveyed in the centerpiece of our stained glass windows which is located above the communion table in our chancel area. The Lord’s Supper will be served. Good Friday there will be an hour-long service at 12 noon. This year it will be held in the sanctuary so we can reflect on those scenes depicted in the windows that relate to the events of Good Friday. There will be music and meditations on the cross.
All this is leading to the Day of Resurrection (Easter, April 8) with services at 8:45 and 11:00 in our sanctuary. There will also be the communitywide celebration held in Stockton Park at 6:30 a.m. on the river. Pastor Mike will be preaching and our Praise band will be leading the music. The Lord’s Supper will also be served at the sunrise service.
These are the high and holy days of the Christian Church and they should give the world pause to hear the message anew and bring encouragement and joy to every believing heart!
Easter Blessings to you and yours,