It is the in-between time. At my church, we have just ended the Maundy Thursday service, remembered Jesus’ institution of the first Eucharist, been commanded to love as he loves us, washed one another’s feet, then stripped the altar. Tonight, Jesus will spend in agonizing prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane, and we, his disciples, will try to watch with him – just one hour. Or maybe, like the original disciples, it will be too painful, too difficult, and we will fall asleep. Tomorrow, Jesus will die on the cross. Tomorrow, before he dies, he will ask God to forgive those who crucified him. And by Sunday, we will be singing Alleluias, and celebrating (Easter egg hunts and feasts and all), the joy of the Resurrection.
We live – constantly – in the in-between times. Daily, the international news brings us back, with Jesus, to suffering, betrayal, loss, heartbreak, death. Daily, our faith, our hope, our trust calls us to live in the time when the Resurrection is already come, the victory won, it is God’s time, and God is among us.
Christ has died, Christ is Risen, Christ will come again.
We pray with Resurrection joy and confidence…for love, peace, forgiveness, compassion and healing
- In Kenya, where the militant islamic group al-Shabab took university students hostage, killing 147
- In Syria, where Islamic State fighters seized most of a vast camp for Palestinian refugees on the outskirts of the capital city of Damascus, and an alliance of Islamist groups captured the northwestern city of Idlib, declaring that it would be run according to Sharia law
- In Yemen, where Houthi rebels and their allies attacked the presidential palace in Aden following heavy clashes, while in the port city of Mukalla al-Qaeda militants stormed a prison and freed at least 150 detainees
- Between other nations and Iran, following the announcement that an “outline agreement” on the future shape of Iran’s nuclear program has been reached
- In Nigeria, where Muhammadu Buhari, a former army general who first came to power 30 years ago during a coup d’etat, has been elected president; outgoing leader Goodluck Jonathan has conceded and urged a peaceful
Light out of darkness, life born from death we pray: for our enemies and our friends, the power-hungry and the powerless, for the least and the greatest, in every nation on earth.
We pray with Resurrection joy and confidence…for new wisdom and cooperation in the healing of our planet
- As heavy rains stir up fears of flooding in the Indian portion of Kashmir
- As Vanuatu faces food insecurity in the wake of a monster cyclone
- As Chile endures its 8th consecutive year of major drought
- As experts predict that climate change will cause Bangladesh to have much saltier drinking water, increasing the risk of strokes and heart attacks
- As California, U.S., declares a major drought and institutes a 25% cut in water usage
Light out of darkness, life born from death we pray: for the seas, air and dry land, and all that grows and lives therein.
Even in the midst of our greatest trials, still we live in the Resurrection.
Still we sing and pray: Alleluia, Amen!
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