This morning’s the service was led by Bishop Michael.
You can listen to his sermon on YouTube: https://youtu.be/7-vg8wyEhNk?t=2506
Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Alleluia!
Even as we entered the church a feast of flower arrangements met our eyes.
Flower arrangements were by Liz Taylor.
Every corner of the sanctuary displayed the new life that the flowers represent.
In front of the communion table the bouquet overflowed in colour demonstrating the overflowing love of God for us all.
The lilies in front of the lectern bring together the purity of the lamb of God alongside our worship of him.
I’m outside the church of Saint Fanurios. It’s a Greek Orthodox church at Deryneia in Cyprus. And it’s where the Anglican congregation
John the Evangelist meets week by week.
And here we are at Holy Week once again. Last year I said that Holy Week and Easter 2020 were going to be Holy Week and Easter like no other. And they certainly weren’t!
And here we are one year on. And sadly it does feel almost the same you could say it even feels worse. And we could be excused for feeling gloom in this long season of pandemic.
Now despite what some wrongly believe Christians are allowed to feel gloomy and low and angry sometimes if that’s what they honestly are feeling after all Jesus was low and angry.
He was angry as when he drove the cheating traders out of the temple this week and he was also low. Think of his agony in the Garden of Gethsemane.
Yet this is the week, this is the time to exult. And I use the word very deliberately;
this is the time to exult.To exult not in any shallow sense but in the sense of that great canticle which is called the Exsultet. It it’s a canticle by long custom is chanted or proclaimed in the darkness of Holy Saturday night or Easter Sunday pre-dawn in the morning. The Exsultet.
So this is the time to exult. Exult that the grain of wheat though hidden and easily thought to be gone in the soil. Exult that that grain of wheat rises and sees the sun and bears fruit; the grain of wheat which is Christ.
And exult, to take another, image that the lamb of sacrifice though slain transforms by his sacrifice absolutely everyone and absolutely everything whether they know it or not. And the lamb is Christ. Exult in short that Christ is revealed as the one who was yesterday and is today and shall be forever.
So happy Holy Week and an exultant Easter. Christ is risen. He’s risen indeed! Hallelujah!
Sunday 28 February 2021, Archbishop Michael presided and spoke at St Helena’s
Three cameras and extra lighting for the live streams from Saint Helena’s during lockdown.
Following St Helena’s tradition we held a Carol Service – but with only Christopher and Anne present, but streamed live.
All the readers were recorded and played in. We had some technical hitches at the start when the software but received thanks from as far away as Wales for the service!
Not only do we have to be spaced apart by 2m during the service, but everyone has to wear masks!