a community creating for the relentless return of Sunday

call to worship: the word of life

L:  The Word of life spoke:
P:  so we could hear the angels’ ‘Alleluias!’
L:  The Word of life reached out:
P:  so we could touch the hope which heals us.
L:  The Word of life walked out of death’s dread tomb:
P:  so we could follow him into life forever.

Submitted by Rev. Thom Shuman, author of Lectionary Liturgies.

Easter day communion: a stop at the table

Invitation to the Table

As we go into the world on this Easter Day,
we first stop here at the table of our risen Lord.
We were just here a few nights ago,
remembering how Jesus shared a meal with his disciples before he was arrested,
but he promises to meet us here again and again and again.
This is the table of our risen Lord,
the table where we remember how he gave of himself for us,
the table where we share the great feast of earth and heaven even now,
the table where we can expect to meet Jesus.

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Easter prayer: joy comes in the morning

Weeping comes for a night,
but joy comes in the morning, O God of power and might.

Death has been defeated
and we shout Alleluia!

Let all that we do today be a prayer of praise.

For many of us,
it is an Easter just like the others,
with Easter bonnets and Sunday best,
with the ringing of bells and hymns of joy,
with the preparing of meals and gathering around tables and hunting for eggs…

But let this be an Easter like no other.
Let us see and hear with resurrection eyes and ears.

Let us discern signs of new life in the usual places—a new baby, the beauty of nature;
and in unusual places… who knows where we might find you if we but look?

It is daunting to be resurrection people
even as we read and watch the news—
news of continued violence, poverty, suffering and despair.
We drink in these stories with our morning coffee, day after day,
and wonder where the Easter’s gone.

One year ago we celebrated your resurrection,
and it seems little has changed in our world since then—
Easter seems an idle tale in the wake of
lives destroyed by war, children abused, a creation spoiled,
and endless bickering among our leaders—
too much hand-wringing and too little willingness to do the difficult things.

Close to home, we know loved ones
who have felt the sting of death in their families;
people who struggle to survive the loss of a job,
people entombed by depression or a crippling illness.

Yes, resurrection eyes are not blind to pain.
Resurrection ears are not deaf to cries of suffering.

But resurrection people see your goodness
that outlasts and overpowers any darkness
we can experience or concoct.

Easter is the climax of the story, but not the end.
You alone can roll away the stone,
but we are called
to run, and tell:
“We have seen the Lord!
Come and follow! Believe, and live!”

If we don’t, who will?
Resurrect us, O God of new life—resurrect us from our complacency and fear.
You have the power to do it.

Submitted by MaryAnn McKibben Dana, Idylwood Presbyterian Church, Falls Church, VA.