Theologian Jurgen Moltmann was drafted into the German army when he was 17 and witnessed the firebombing of his hometown of Hamburg, in which 40,000 civilians were killed. He wrote at one point, “Good Friday is the center of the world.” But he also wrote that “Easter morning is the Sunrise of the coming of God and the morning of new life and the beginning of the future of the world. The laughter of the universe is God’s delight.” The story begins with weeping, grief, and despair. Jesus is abandoned by most of his friends. He is executed in a horrific manner. Shock and awe. Jesus offered hope and the hope was snatched away. What were the followers of Jesus to do? Good Friday was the center of the world.
We preachers stammer and stutter about Easter because it is beyond comprehension. How can one speak eloquently about something that is beyond words? The world shifted… no longer is Good Friday the center of the universe. Easter is the center of the universe. How does one describe that seismic shift?
One of my favorite authors, Anne Lamott, writes: “I don’t have the right personality for Good Friday, for the crucifixion… I’d like to skip ahead to the resurrection vision of one of the kids in our Sunday School who drew a picture of the Easter Bunny outside an open tomb: everlasting life and a basket full of chocolates.” She goes on to say, “Darkness is our context. Darkness is Easter’s context. Without the darkness you couldn’t see the light. Hope is…about choosing to believe that love is bigger than any grim, bleak [stuff] anyone can throw at us.”
Easter laughter is about the ultimate and eventual triumph of love over ANYTHING and EVERYTHING Good Friday may throw at us.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Maundy, Maundy – 7 pm Thursday in the sanctuary. Communion accompanied by modern lyrics and songs… Dylan, McCartney, Joe Cocker, Tracy Chapman… One of the most unique worship services that happens at Centenary. Don’t miss it. ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ BRING FLOWERS THIS SUNDAY, IF POSSIBLE…. Azaleas, flowering quince (whatever that is), wisteria, roses, dogwood blossoms, weeds flowering in your yard, whatever! And pick a few extra for people who may not have flowers. We are decorating the cross in the sanctuary this Sunday morning. Come a little early and put your flowers on the cross… Don’t forget! AND… Coffee and Conversation this Sunday… Great time of visiting before worship. ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ EASTER SUNDAY – 2014 With anticipation we approach this special day. I will be preaching a sermon titled “The Tapestry of Life – An Easter Weaving”. The music is always a highlight. Also, you will see some amazing things inside the sanctuary this Sunday morning. Easter promises to be a great day of celebration. Call a friend (or two or three) and invite them to join you at Centenary this Sunday. +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Men’s Breakfast at Jerry’s Farm – Saturday, 8:30… For more info contact Jerry firstname.lastname@example.org