Reader's Rumblings -The
Easter Sunrise Service and Lessons from Scripture
"Then Jesus said to his disciples; "Let us go back to Judea." But
the disciples replied; "But Rabbi, a short while ago the Jews tried to stone you and yet you want to go back there!"
..... But Thomas, known as Didymus, said to the rest of the disciples; "Let us also go that we may die with him."
When the Rector told the gathering of the PCC that this year the Easter Day service
would be a Sunrise Service and that it would be at 8am there was silence. Then; "But last year we had the evening Vigil
Service." and "But what about families with children?" and "Why can't we have a normal Easter Day
service?" and ... so on. Then a lone voice; "Well, let us try it. Until we try it we won't know what it is like."
"A King prepared a wedding feast for his son and invited many guests. When
the feast had been prepared he sent his servants to summon the guests. But they all alike began to make excuses; "I have
just bought a field and I must visit it - please excuse me." and "I have just bought five yoke of oxen and I must
go and try them - please excuse me." and ... so on. Then the King sent his servants out into the country lanes and told
them to invite anyone that they could find so that the wedding hall might be full."
Then came the excuses; "We have family, friends and property elsewhere and we must visit them - so unfortunately
we shall be away for Easter." and "In view of Brexit we must make a last visit to France - just in case, you know.
So unfortunately we shall also be away for Easter - please excuse us." and ... so on.
"O ye of little faith!"
At 7:30am on
Easter Morning the Rector and Reader, both robed, sat in an empty church and contemplated the empty tomb - the Aumbry was
open and empty. Together they wondered if anyone would come, and if so, how many. One thought three might come, the other
thought four. Then just a few minutes before 8am they began to arrive. They came alone, in pairs and in families. They came
from neighbouring villages and from outlying homesteads. A grandmother came with her daughter and granddaughter, aged five,
and whose name, appropriately, was Martha and who insisted on wearing her Sunday dress. And on a glorious Spring morning
it was a joy to hear their voices fill the church; "Alleluia, Christ is risen. He is risen indeed. Alleluia."