April 02, 2015 at 2:20 PM
by: Mary Mortenson April 2, 2015
For the last year, Jack and I have been occasionally leading services at a South Dakota two-point rural parish. We have come to know and love the people that worship at these two small churches. While we take turns with most worship duties, I always get to do the Children’s Sermon – one of my favorite parts of the service.
Our most recent visit to this parish was Palm Sunday. Since I knew I would not see the children on Easter, I combined a Passion – Easter emphasis for them. We talked about how the coming week would be one in which we remember that Jesus died for us, but even as we remember that, we know that there is a surprise Easter morning. I gave each child a plastic Easter egg and told them that they could not open the egg until Easter morning, and I promised them a happy surprise when they do. I hope they are pleased with the little tattoos hidden in each egg, and I hope the symbolism of anticipation and joy does not escape them.
I can relate to the children, because I can hardly wait for the Easter surprise. I know that, as dark as Holy Week is, on Easter morning, there is unbridled joy. However, unlike the children and their little plastic Easter eggs, we know that the Holy Surprise is Jesus’ resurrection and all that that means. It means that our sins are forgiven. It means that nothing – ever – can separate us from the radical love of God. It means that we are called to share this amazing news with all who will listen to us – or more importantly - watch how we live.
It is this Word – this example – that we seek to share with people who are incarcerated. Notice I said “share,” not “give,” for the results are reciprocal, with blessings splashing all around. In honor of that reality, I invite you to consider a special financial gift to PCA this Easter season. You may mail your gift to PCA, PO Box 1335, Sioux Falls, SD 57101 or donate through PayPal.
The staff, Board of Directors and I pray that this is a time of contemplation and celebration for you.