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Easter blessings

“God’s love is the power of new life,” says Bishop David Bard, “and it’s stronger than death.”

When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?” Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.”  – John 20:14-14

Greetings in the name of the risen Christ!

I hope this Easter morning finds you filled with hope and joy, not hope and joy in denial of the difficulties in our lives or the struggles of our world, but resurrection hope and joy.

There is no denying that we live in a world woven with pain and tragedy.  We recently witnessed with horror the use of chemical weapons in Syria.  On Palm Sunday we heard the news of Coptic Christian churches in Egypt being bombed.  This week in the on-going war on terrorism the United States dropped in Afghanistan the biggest non-nuclear bomb ever used, nicknamed MOAB – the Mother Of All Bombs.  Terrorism is horrific, and we rightly oppose it.  Humankind, however, has not often managed well the escalating destructiveness of our weapons, even when their use might be justifiable.  I’ve not yet even mentioned smaller violence in our world or racism or various forms of oppression.  More personally we deal regularly with disappointments, diseases, strained relationships, and loss, including the deaths of people we love.  Some days, perhaps, we feel entombed, our lives in dark caves with massive stones blocking the light.

Resurrection hope and joy are not a denial of difficulty, but rather trust the God of Jesus Christ and the power of God’s love to work with and through difficulty.  God’s love is the power of new life.  God’s love is stronger than death.  As the sun rises the Easter morning in your home, at your church, no matter what may be going on in our world or your life, may hope and joy rise within you.  And just as Mary was surprised to see the risen Jesus, thinking him the gardener, so may you find the risen Christ in surprising places.

Grace, Peace, Hope and Joy,

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