• Content

  • Pages

  • Upcoming Events

    • Sunday service - Holy Communion October 2, 2022 at 9:30 am – 11:00 am Grace Church 215 Pleasant Street, Sheldon, VT Website: www.gracechurchsheldon.orgTime:  09:30 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)        Every week on Sun.Join Zoom Meetinghttps://us02web.zoom.us/j/83929911344?pwd=alZQTWZMN0ZkWFFPS1hmNjNkZkU2UT09Meeting ID: 839 2991 1344Password: Call for detailsOne tap mobile+13126266799,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (Chicago)+19294362866,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (New York)Dial by your location        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)        +1 929 436 2866 US (New York)Meeting ID:…
    • Sunday service - Holy Communion October 9, 2022 at 9:30 am – 11:00 am Grace Church 215 Pleasant Street, Sheldon, VT Website: www.gracechurchsheldon.orgTime:  09:30 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)        Every week on Sun.Join Zoom Meetinghttps://us02web.zoom.us/j/83929911344?pwd=alZQTWZMN0ZkWFFPS1hmNjNkZkU2UT09Meeting ID: 839 2991 1344Password: Call for detailsOne tap mobile+13126266799,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (Chicago)+19294362866,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (New York)Dial by your location        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)        +1 929 436 2866 US (New York)Meeting ID:…
    • Sunday service - Holy Communion October 16, 2022 at 9:30 am – 11:00 am Grace Church 215 Pleasant Street, Sheldon, VT Website: www.gracechurchsheldon.orgTime:  09:30 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)        Every week on Sun.Join Zoom Meetinghttps://us02web.zoom.us/j/83929911344?pwd=alZQTWZMN0ZkWFFPS1hmNjNkZkU2UT09Meeting ID: 839 2991 1344Password: Call for detailsOne tap mobile+13126266799,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (Chicago)+19294362866,,83929911344#,,1#,816603# US (New York)Dial by your location        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)        +1 929 436 2866 US (New York)Meeting ID:…

Good Friday  4/10/2020

Good Friday  4/10/2020

Here we are, standing at the foot of the cross with Mary and John and some of the others. It is finished. We are standing here in the midst of a pandemic, what in earlier times would have been called a plague, a plague that is covering the earth with disease and death.

And he has died. He was our great hope, and he has died. Before he gave up his spirit, he turned to John and Mary. To John he said, “This is your mother,” and to Mary he said, “This is your son.”

He formed a new family. And, in our Collect for today we pray, “Almighty God, we pray you graciously to behold this your family, for whom our Lord Jesus Christ was willing to be betrayed, and given into the hands of sinners, and to suffer death upon the cross; who now lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever. Amen.

It is over. He has died a horrible death, the death reserved for the lowest of the low, hardened criminals. He was hardly one of those. Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus, courageous but hitherto secret disciples, take his body away to give it a loving and reverent burial.

It is over. All hope is gone. Or is it? In her book God in Pain, Barbara Brown Taylor writes concerning the cross, “He took the man-made wreckage of the world inside himself and labored with it—a long labor, almost three days—and he did not let go of it until he could transform it and return it to us as life.”

On Holy Saturday we remember that he descended into hell, descended to the dead, so that every part of the creation, every creature would have the promise, the possibility, of new life in him.

For almost three days he wrestled with it all, the human grasping for power and then abusing that power, the very thing that had killed him; the human wish for power that drives us to conquer each other, to lord it over each other, to kill each other, to torture each other, to sort each other out by race and class so that somebody always ends up on the bottom and we always end up on top.  Every sin, every form of brokenness that kills and destroys all that is good. He takes it all into himself, and, as Taylor says so eloquently and so truthfully, he wrestles with it in the crucible of his love and healing and transforms it into life.

He is doing this while Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus risk their lives asking Pilate for permission to take his cherished body and place it in Joseph’s new tomb. He is doing this while he is lying in that tomb.

As we walk through the rest of the journey to Easter, through the remainder of Good Friday and then Holy Saturday, may we be aware, not only of the horrific death which he endured, but of the power of his love, which is able to labor with every misuse of power, every brokenness which human sin can create, to labor with all of that and transform it into life.  Amen.

%d bloggers like this: