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The Convocation of Episcopal Churches in Europe

Messages from Bishop Mark

2019 Easter Message

Posted by The Rt. Rev. Mark D. W. Edington on

Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
There is a slightly odd disconnect between the solemnity of Good Friday and the riotously beautiful spring weather that has warmed the earth in these days of Triduum. I can’t count the number of times I have been told by new acquaintances something along the lines of — “It’s unusually warm for this time of year. It’s almost never this beautiful. Don’t count on it always being like this!”
But perhaps at least for this year the weather itself is offering us a lesson in Resurrection. 
Yes, we have lived through our season of penitence. Yes, we have again been brought up short by our easily distracted will, by our inconstant devotion to prayer, by our failure—as we were reminded on Ash Wednesday—to commend the faith that is in us.
And yes, just as this season has drawn to a close, we have been reminded that even the majestic temples we build to glorify God can come to ruin and ashes. 
In the midst of all of this, the trees are budding and the blooms are demanding our attention. In the midst of all of this, there is new life insisting on springing forth. In the midst of all of this, the joy that is at the center of God’s love for us demands to overcome our sadness, our sourness, our exhaustion, our doubts. 
So having done our work of self-examination, let us dare to give ourselves over to joy of the abundant life Christ came to call us to. Let us share the warmth, the beauty, the life we have come to know through the radiance of Christ’s love for us, in the same way the world around us is insisting on coming back to life.
Yes, we have challenges ahead. Yes, there are difficult questions we are called to face with the courage of disciples: How to care for the least and the lost, how to care for God’s creation as faithful stewards, how to live as people of faith among people of other faiths and none.
But in all of this, as Bishop Curry has reminded us right in our own cathedral, we must be not just proclaimers but examples of the way of love for all people. People have to see in us that we are living out that new commandment Christ gave us at the end of his earthy ministry—to love each other as Jesus loved us.
When they see us sharing that love, when they see in us the joy we know because of the sure and certain hope of Resurrection, then we will be doing the work of disciples—and walking in the way of love.
So when all those unfamiliar faces show up on Easter, help them see and know the joy we have. 
When they ask whether we walk our talk, tell them about all of the ways in which we are seeking to live out our call to love through our service to others, within and beyond our churches.
And when they wonder whether it can really be true that this multinational, multilingual, cross-cultural collection of “crazy Christians” really loves each other in this way, tell them that they can always count on it being like this.
May the hope of the Resurrection be renewed in your heart, this season and always.
The Right Reverend Mark D. W. Edingtion
Bishop in Charge
Convocation of Episcopal Churches in Europe

Tags: easter, joy, welcome, transition