Watch this week’s service on YouTube by clicking: April 16 Worship Service Video
Join us for worship on Sundays at 10:00
- Please join us after the service for HeBrews Café, offering refreshments and fellowship after worship.
- A new video from our Children’s Ministry is available here: https://youtu.be/2Xis3NDCL5M
- Michael Wilson’s new book “A Pastoral Pandemic: Remaining Connected in a Time of Disconnection” is now available in store and online through CommonWord Bookstore (Canadian Mennonite University). “A Pastoral Pandemic” is a collection of letters chronicling the two years Charleswood United Church suspended in-person worship. For more information visit: https://www.commonword.ca/go/3408.
- The 15th Annual Yom Hashoah Interfaith Commemorative Service will be held at Temple Shalom, 1077 Grant Ave. on Sunday, April 16, 2023, at 7:00 PM. Michael Wilson will be one of the invited readers of the Holocaust Scroll. The event is open to people of all faiths and you are warmly welcome.
Welcome to worship for Sunday, April 16, 2023.
It has been said many times before but there is a beauty and a wondrous congruity to the celebration of Easter in the Northern Hemisphere. We sing our alleluias and proclaim “Christ is Risen” just as we are beginning to sense the lengthening of days and find new warmth in the sun, just as the snow is receding and we begin to look for the first robin and the first crocus of the new spring. It can feel that while we are giving thanks for the gift of new life inside the church, outside the whole of creation is joining in our worship.
I was walking one morning this week and spoke to a woman who was carrying the backpack of her five year old grandson. He was focussed on the wonder of the moment, crashing through the thin ice covering puddles on the sidewalk, the consequence of a few days of melting days and freezing nights. I complimented him on his blue rubber boots. He just said, “Yeah” and continued to look for more crunchy ice he could break through to step in the water beneath. I agree with him. Talk is cheap when there are miracles to walk through.
The new life of spring serves our Easter celebrations but it is important to say, they are not one and the same thing. On the church calendar, Easter is a season lasting 50 days, until the day of Pentecost (a word whose root is ‘pente” meaning ‘five’). Easter as a season does not simply stretch out a holiday. After all, as one of my professors once said ‘every Sunday is a mini-Easter’. We don’t need fifty days of Easter to really, really take the story of Jesus’ resurrection seriously. Nor to make up for the chocolate we didn’t eat in 40 days of Lent!! Rather, Easter as a season gives us time to look around the resurrection and see the change, see the transformation, see the new life of the people around Jesus as well.
We know the story we read on Easter Sunday, the mystery of the resurrection told simply because this is not something to be ‘explained’. But in the season that follows we look to the stories that testify to the changes that took place in everybody else. How Thomas’ doubts were set aside. How Peter’s denials were forgiven. How the band of followers who were in a locked room for fear of the authorities become the courageous evangelists of the early church.
In the season of Easter we ask ourselves what resurrection means for those of us who have heard the story and are commissioned to share it. What is new life for those who mourn, those who despair, those who fear? How can love change or transform a world that often forgets that it is loved?
And puddles under ice, crocuses under snow, birds in bare trees. That’s the season of Easter as well.
Grace and peace,
- Share the service with friends by forwarding this email or using this link: https://youtu.be/wTcoK5Fb55I
- The reading for this week’s service can be found here: Acts 10:34-43
- Did you know you can support this ministry by e-transfer, automatic withdrawal (PAR), and gifted securities, in addition to weekly or monthly cheques? For Offering Information please visit: https://charleswoodunited.org/support/ Thank you for your generous support.
- For news and events please have a look at Life & Work on our website: Life and Work
- For more information on earthquake relief efforts in Turkey and Syria please visit any of the following:
Mennonite Central Committee: MCC Earthquake Relief.
The Canadian Red Cross page link: Canadian Red Cross Earthquake Appeal.
The United Church Response link: UCC Earthquake Relief