Good News, 04.09.09

Friends – in honor of Holy Week a poem from author John Updike who recently died:

Seven Stanzas at Easter

Make no mistake:  if He rose at all
it was as His body;
if the cells’ dissolution did not reverse, the molecules
reknit, the amino acids rekindle,
the Church will fall.

It was not as the flowers,
each soft Spring recurrent;
it was not as His Spirit in the mouths and fuddled
eyes of the eleven apostles;
it was as His flesh:  ours.

The same hinged thumbs and toes,
the same valved heart
that – pierced – died, withered, paused, and then
regathered out of enduring Might
new strength to enclose.

Let us not mock God with metaphor,
analogy, sidestepping, transcendence;
making of the event a parable, a sign painted in the
faded credulity of earlier ages:
let us walk through the door.

The stone is rolled back, not paper-mache,
not a stone in a story,
but the vast rock of materiality that in the slow
grinding of time will eclipse for each of us
the wide light of day.

And if we will have an angel at the tomb,
make it a real angel,
weighty with Max Planck’s quanta, vivid with hair,
opaque in the dawn light, robed in real linen
spun on a definite loom.

Let us not seek to make it less monstrous,
for our own convenience, our own sense of beauty,
lest, awakened in one unthinkable hour, we are
embarrassed by the miracle,
and crushed by remonstrance.

Holy Week/Triduum:  The  Schedule for a Week of Stillness

  • Maundy Thursday:  Passover Seder, 6:30 pm (The Meal at which the Lord’s Supper was instituted.)
  • Good Friday:  Experiential Faith Walk (Walk the stages of the Cross at your own pace.  The church will also be open from Noon to Three for personal prayer and meditation.)
  • Holy Saturday:  The Easter Vigil is celebrated with the Catechumens, Confirmands, godfriends, mentors, families and friends at 7:30 pm.
  • Easter Worship:  10:00 am with a Brunch before and Egg Hunt following our Celebration.

Rev. Sue Schneider (a former seminarian at Peace) has written a wonderful article on Art as Resurrection in the Bold Cafe magazine which is a national ELCA magazine.  It is very timely because of Holy Week and because she references Grunewald Guild and Peace in her piece – just in time for our 10th Anniversary.  Lois McGee highly recommends this article!

Speaking of our 10th Anniversary: Wasn’t it amazing that we had two 10 year old Acolytes serving on March 29th (completely “unplanned”); the Bouquet of Flowers from Beth Chaim was a such a beautiful and surprising gift; and how the children’s dropping of stones throughout the service created a well coordinated rhythmic music of its own (almost hinting at Easter anticipations – “roll the stone away”.)  It was a blessing to have David and Wara Alexander worship with us too!

Our thanks to Zhiting Tsai for her powerful flute piece last Sunday “For Love of Golgatha”, and to our Narrators: Martha Mantei, Karl Pfeiffer and Pr. Anita.  Also thanks to Denise and Brian, daughters Annika and Brielle Strom and Deacon Everett Sylwanowicz for the new plants at our entrance ways.  Hard work with beautiful results.

For those of you who can’t experience enough joy and praise there will be Jazz at Peace this Sunday evening at 5:00 pm with Mad and Eddie Duran.

I saw Confirmand Ethan Hepner break a wooden board with his bare foot at his martial arts class recently.  If you don’t think Confirmation makes you stronger, you obviously haven’t studied your Catechism!

Hold and fold in your prayers: Micki, Jonathan, Judy, Georgia, John, Sandy, Bob, Nancy, the unemployed, the imprisoned, those who are searching and each other.

Blessings on your journey into the Pascal Mystery with Christ.  Let the silence speak, let the Word speak, let the Spirit speak, let the Cross speak, let the Eucharist speak – that we may hear and know and trust the Resurrecting Joy and Delight needed for our times!  Pr. Steve