A Message from Ellen 3-29-23
March 29, 2023
March 29, 2023
This Sunday begins our observance of Holy Week. The Celebration of Easter is at the exact center of our faith, and is the reason that we are called Christ-ians. Christmas gets much more cultural emphasis because of the obvious economic potential. But Easter is the center of our faith. I hope to see each of you on Easter Sunday. And, I want to plead with you to prepare your hearts and minds BEFORE you come to that worship service. You might choose to prepare by re-reading the stories of Jesus crucifixion, death, and resurrection from Scripture: Matthew 27+, Mark 14+, Luke 22+, or John 18+. You might commit to regular times of prayer (more than usual) this week, or experiment with fasting to be reminded of Jesus’ suffering and loss for us. AND you are also invited to participate in the following special events at FLPC.
1. Palm Sunday – April 2 @ 10am – We will all wave palm branches and remember how Jesus came into Jerusalem to shouts of acclamation on this Sunday, while also anticipating that he will be crucified before week’s end. Our theme for worship is Sacrifice. Following worship, there is a pot-luck brunch under the breezeway, AND an Easter Egg Hunt (one for little people on the playground and another for the older elementary children). So, children are encouraged to bring their baskets to collect eggs after the brunch.
2. Maundy Thursday – April 6 @ 6pm – The worship will tell again the story of the Passover and help make the connection between this ancient story and Jesus’ institution of The Last Supper (or Communion). There will be stations at which we can taste a couple of the symbolic foods from the Seder Passover meal, and then we will celebrate The Lord’s Supper by intinction. Come casually dressed. The service will not be long, will involve some eating and moving around. I hope that young families will find it helps them explain both communion and Easter to their children. Infant nursery provided.
3. Good Friday – April 7 @ 6pm – This short service focuses on the seven last words of Christ from the Cross. The sanctuary begins in full light and ends in darkness with all of the furniture draped in black. This year, we will also darken the sanctuary using black curtains. The goal is to experience the death of Christ in a way that helps us understand why the resurrection is really GOOD NEWS. We so often skip over the suffering of Christ. When we do, it is very easy for Easter to become only about chocolate and Easter Ham. Don’t bow to that cultural pressure. Infant nursery provided.
4. Easter Sunday – April 9 – We will celebrate and observe communion in the Sunrise Service in the Parlor at 7am and in regular worship in the Sanctuary at 10am. At 9am we will have a time of coffee fellowship! Come and celebrate with us!
At Christmas we say that the “light has come into the world” in the birth of Jesus. But during Holy Week, it appears that evil has won. If you want to take a stand for the light and against the perception that evil and darkness win, then come and walk with us in God’s beautiful way during Holy Week! See you in worship!