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Friday, April 06, 2012

11th Hour Preacher Party: The Son Will Soon Be Rising

OK Gals and Pals, we are almost there.  How are we all doing?  Still hanging in there?


I know many of us are up to our eyeballs in Scripture, liturgy, children's moments, and sermons, but what I want to know is - - are you taking care of yourself this weekend, too?  It's so easy for that to get lost in the shuffle, but it will make the celebration of the resurrection so much more joyful if we're doing it with good health and good energy.  Take some time in this last leg of the marathon to grab some water, walk a bit, and breathe in the breath of God.  The Spirit is with us and guiding us.

I know lots of conversations have been going on this week about what we're doing at each of our services, but refresh our memories.  Who's on John?  Who's on Mark?  Who's on something completely different?  Do you need anything to help with your preparations?  There's been talk about children's sermons in the Facebook group.  Someone else needed a last minutes 20-25 Sunday School lesson plan.  Can anyone suggest anything for these pieces?  Join the conversation in the comments, and we will be to the resurrection together!

May our day together be a blessing for each of us and all of us together.  Peace!

326 comments:

  1. Just posted in yesterdays RGBP, but here it is again:
    Sunday sermon is written, except it is only 500 words, plus the ‘children’s story’ . here it is, any suggestions?

    About to go to the church and dress it for tomorrow. Then maybe the hospital for a visit. Why do people tell me one minute before Good Friday service is due to begin that a member of the congregation has been in hospital since Sunday evening, mostly in ICU? At least they told me the family are not allowing visitors beyond the family. One of those complicated family situations :) I’ll ring the hospital later and found out if I can speak with him.

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    1. Pearl - Your sermon has inspired me to "continue the conversation" that I have kept going this week from Palm Sunday to Wednesday to Friday. Those who were there for those services will hear the familiar strains, and hopefully others won't be lost. I love that you say "I don't know" because I say that all the time and I wonder if people would rather have the easy answers sometimes.

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  2. Greetings! I can't believe we are almost there. So much yet to do.
    Blessings on each of you. May you find joy in the midst of the chaos.

    Any one have a good intergenerational Sunday School idea?

    Thank you Stephanie for the reminder of self care.

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  3. Oh pearl! You must have relatives of folks in my congregation. I am always the last to know.

    RevKel, I still have a bunch left to do. Well, not a WHOLE bunch, but enough. I have my sermon to write, but I'm not worried about that. I don't yet have the slides/order finalized for our 8:00 a.m. service because it just kept slipping to the bottom of the list this week. All the details are organized and ordered on a piece of paper in my chicken scratch handwriting, but I have NO MOTIVATION to turning that chicken scratch into a polished order of worship and liturgy by tomorrow morning when the musicians need to add their own pieces to it. I've given myself to 11:30 tonight, then when make myself get out of bed in the morning when I wake up and finish it then.

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  4. 9 hours sleep for me last night. I feel a different person.
    Pearl - I love that sermon, especially the not understanding and not wanting to move on. May I use some of it for my sermon?
    I have to preach twice, first (vigil just before dawn - 5:30 am for us!) and then at 8am. First is Luke, then Mark, so I want something fairly general. The choir will just have to hear it twice! Rehearsal at 10 so will check in later.
    This parish uses incense (:() and I have to find out how it fits in with the vigil service . . .

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    1. Pat, that's one thing I love about RevGals sharing ideas. Mostly I get ideas, feel free to use what works for you.

      seeing it is Saturday afternoon here, I am guessing it is still Friday evening in the US?
      tomorrow an early start, 5.45 am sunrise service, one of the lay preachers is leading that service, I only have 9.00 am to go, then going away for 2 nights!

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    2. I'm not in the US but in South Africa so it is Saturday morning 08h15 for us!

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    3. Pat, so you are at teh start of Saturday, here it is 4.30 pm. we are singing a song from Iona 'Lord of Life and Resurrection'. if you have the book 'Fire and Bread' it is on page 25 and continues that theme of moving from where we are. it is 87.87.D so can be sung to a number of tunes.

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    4. Love this whole exchange! Just had to pop in to say that! Gives me chills how we connect and share and support each other across time zones, continents, and oceans!

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  5. I am so not in the mood for this. If I am honest, I haven't been in the mood for any of Lent; I think this is because the last year has been like one long Lenten stretch for me, with a steady series of losses that I have barely begun to process. Every time I think I have taken some steps forward, I get knocked back again. I am hoping that preaching Easter sermons will turn me in a new direction, because I am ready for some resurrection!

    I am starting with an ancient sermon; at the Vigil on Saturday night, I am using the Easter Sermon of St. John Chrysostom, with congregational participation. It is an amazing sermon, and I really hope this will work the way I envision, encouraging the congregation to listen closely to his powerful words.

    On Sunday, for the big family service, I have a working idea and about half a sermon. I just hope the other half shows up by the time I need it! I am thrilled that a member of our parish who is facing her second bone marrow transplant in under a year is going to be able to attend; she will wear a mask and have seating with her family a bit away from everyone else, but she can be there. Her presence and her faith are the face of Easter for me this year :-)

    Prayers for all who write and pray and lead and serve this weekend, that in the midst of it all, we also will find time and energy to worship our risen Lord.

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    1. I pray for resurrection in your life and that you will experience the joy of Easter.

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    2. One of the things that I preach about the empty tomb is that it brought hope more than joy. Yes, John talks about rejoicing at the appearance of Jesus, but before that when all they have is the empty tomb there is hope. No belly bumps or high fives at the tomb. Praying you can find hope in resurrection this week.

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    3. Beth, my most difficult Lent/Easter was as a preacher when I was living my own Lent. I remember sitting at a table staring at my 'Hesed' tattoo reminding myself that my head had faith in God, even if my heart was broken. - all while I scratched out an Easter sermon that rang hollow (in fact I copied a lot of the choir lyrics and had them sing right after the sermon so it looked like it all tied together).

      All is to say, I'm praying for you as you witness to a faith that believes even in the dark.

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    4. Prayers for you, Betsy. That the Spirit will deliver the words to you that you can deliver with honesty, proclaiming the good news for yourself and others.

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    5. Betsy, Margaret Irwin used that sermon every year at the Easter Vigil at All Saints in Palo Alto. The congregation loved it and looked forward to hearing it once again. It fit so well with the Vigil readings. I'm sure it will do the job for your congregation.

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  7. about 4 am here in my part of the US and I'm up - ugh. Hopefully I can take the very sketchy outlines that seemed adequate if not brilliant on Thursday morning and make it into two whole sermons for Sunrise and regular service. Prayer walking in a neighborhood near the church at 9 a.m., and printing bulletins after. So still plenty of time for sermon bolstering - just need the ideas.

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    1. Progress made. Will try for a little more sleep. I'll check in later to see how everyone is doing.

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  8. Mark for me this year. My challenge is that last year I preached the best. Easter sermon. ever.

    I can say that because I used a paper that my friend wrote that explained the meaning of the word lairos (bullshit) and then listed the hopelessness in the world, followed each time by the word 'lairos!' How do you beat saying 'bullshit' in the pulpit on Easter morning?

    I need to let the competition go, and just write a good sermon. Baseball practice at 10 and then I'm not sure if the Boy is staying with Dad for a bit or coming home so I'll need to spend a bit of time getting the Easter basket hidden and a proper trail of hints to find it.

    I'm ready to be done with the Easter bunny.

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    1. I want to read that sermon, kzj, it sounds amazing! where the heck is lairos in the text? not in Mark, right?

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    2. It's in Luke. That does sound like the best sermon ever. :-)

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    3. I am totally putting "lairos" in my 2013 calendar. I am totally stealing that sermon idea.

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    4. For 2013 - verse 11: But these words seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them.

      idle tale = leiros = bullshit :)

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    5. I want a like button for this post....BS from the pulpit -- I totally love it and I'm saving it for the next time I do Luke, too!

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    6. Some professor pointed that out in seminary chapel one year. I think all of us wondered if we'd ever have the guts to say it in our own churches. I love that you could.

      While I didn't say bullshit in my favorite Easter sermon, I am running up against that similar competition. My favorite ever was three years ago when I wrote my first Mark one. Mark is my favorite gospel, and I just can't imagine writing something different about his Easter account than I did the first time.

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    7. Definitely for me next year too! It's almost as good as the KJV's "he who pisseth against a wall"!

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  9. just printing out the service for tomorrow. planning for an early night, as sunrise service is at 5.45 am - a time I rarely see. At least I am not leading.
    sermon for tomorrow is still incredibly short, which probably means I will ad lib as I go along.

    hope your Easter Saturdays give time for rest as well as final preparations for Sunday celebrations.

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  10. OK, so I am preaching Mark with a peppering of Saturday Night Live---
    The title is Really??!

    Starting with a modified sketch of Kermit the Frog and Seth (SNL) belaboring the fact that tomato sauce in school cafeteria pizza is considered a vegetable, and then they riff off that--look it up on YouTube.

    It's hard to explain, but then I am going to use the theme of Really??! to explore the text, and then end up with the hope against hope that Liz talks about above.

    It may or may not work, but hey, it's only 7:30 am here, and I have plenty of time! (besides carving out time for a birthday party, errands, stuffing eggs, oh, and doing some self care!

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  11. Good morning! I just finished typing up my notes for the Sunrise service reflection. Of course, we're not sure we'll have that service outdoors, because this is Maine, and there's snow in the forecast. It's a bummer, because the place we go is great, but with 40+ people signed up for Easter Breakfast, I suspect we'll get a turnout even if we move it back to church. (In fact, some of those people come to breakfast without going to the service...)
    I'm struggling with my sermon for the regular service. Well, not that there's anything regular about Easter, but you know what I mean. I made what seemed like a very wise choice to adapt something I preached to a small group at an early service in another church a couple of years ago, and I made some additions to it, but I went to bed last night feeling very dissatisfied with it. I guess if you're going to go back to an old manuscript, it might be a good idea to consider what sort of place you were in that year. And I realize now I barely believed any of what I was saying. So I'm going to take another run at it this morning with that in mind and see if I can give it what it needs.
    Later today, my Confirmands are helping set up and prep for the breakfast tomorrow. Church members have donated the groceries and defrayed all the expenses so that the students can take an offering at breakfast for scholarships to our UCC camp here in Maine. That's what they wanted to do as a service project: to help other kids go to the camp that has meant so much to them. I love that.
    And tonight, I'll have all three of my children here, which means I have a few things to do to get ready!

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    1. It's amazing and yet not at all surprising how where we are personally infiltrates our sermons. My first Easter sermon was just post break-up with my husband, and I remember asking the senior pastor, "Was that a little dark?" And him smiling kindly and saying, "a little." Like the inside of a cave at midnight.

      I envy you the presence of your children. Daughter's spring break was last week. Son probably doesn't even know tomorrow's Easter. :-/

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    2. It's possible Easter was the draw for #1 Son. After all, the last time he went to church other than Christmas here was Easter last year in NYC. :-) Yes, I raised a Chreaster. But he's only 26. There's hope he'll be a Returner someday.
      Anyway, he's the draw for #2, who was just home. He'll be here for about 24 hours, including a cruel wake-up time for the 6:15 Sunrise Service.
      Now that I've had more coffee, I'm going to try and bring a little light into my manuscript.

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    3. Hope that light comes this morning so you can enjoy your homecomings today!

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    4. I was also going to revamp a past sermon but found it didn't fit my context now. I'm still battling.
      I envy you your children there. You are blessed. Our 2 daughters are at the top of the world (UK) and my son and his wife have gone away for the weekend.

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  12. Well a bit more sleep anyway. I woke up again realizing I haven't planned for the logistics of flowering the cross and I haven't found anyone to help with parking (our lot isn't marked and gets kind of random and space isn't used well without some direction) and I haven't asked 8 people to park in the cemetery spaces to open up more room in our lot. Ackkkkkk!

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  13. Good morning, friends!

    I, too, am adapting an old sermon, but today it seems dry and empty. Or is that me?

    Thanks for hosting, She Rev! After coffee and an attitude adjustment, I'll be back.

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  14. Good morning friends. I am shortly (after getting dressed) on my way to church for a graveside service followed by a funeral (for complicated reasons having to do with the cemetery). The good news: I didn't have to write the funeral homily; the gentleman who died had requested long ago that an old friend preach his funeral, and we are presiding together. However, since I've been, you know, kind of busy (with Maundy Thursday service/ communion/ sermon) and Good Friday (7 last words, quiet meditative service without a sermon) and the general prep for the funeral... I haven't started my Easter Sermon.

    Tomorrow we have sunrise at a nearby park, really truly AT sunrise, and then our regular 10:30 sermon. I don't plan to write two different sermons, but to do the same one informally, without notes at the park, and then using the full text in the church.

    Preaching John this year. When I was first ordained (7.5 years ago) I decided that I would do the following: alternate between the gospel of the year and John. That means this year I am preaching John. But I'm thinking that next year I want to stop adhering to an arbitrary rule I set for myself and go more with what inspires me???

    Oh, and I have not.one.word written. And I won't sit down to write until 2 pm at least, after said funeral. Not complaining, it's just the way it is (as Bruce Hornsby says).

    Thanks all for being here. Blessings and the Spirit and good self-care to you.

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    1. Blessings on your busy day!

      I'm doing something similar with the same sermon. I usually do something preaching-ish at our earlier service instead of a full sermon, but since I have to keep my sermon short for the later service anyway, I decided that I'll just preach it twice this year. I'll either do it without my manuscript and just talk it or at least come on down off the chancel and walk around delivering it from the iPad.

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  15. I am expecting 40 bales of pine straw to be delivered today, so I've been working really hard to get my sermon finished so that I can do some much needed yardwork...and I need to bake a cake. But, my sermon title is "Unleash the Alleluia." I am planning to quote a little of T.D. Jakes words from Whitney Houston's funeral - he went through a litany of things that can happen to make it look like death has won. It was a short, powerful message. Then, I've got a nice little story about a guy singing the Hallelujah chorus and thinking that it ended too soon, and he still had some Hallelujah's that needed to get out.

    For the first time, our community sunrise service was cancelled because only 4 people (outside of clergy) showed up last year. Honestly, I am not really a morning person, and I feel guilty to say this but, I'm glad I don't have to get up before dawn!

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    1. Chilly Fingers, as I read the first sentence, I was trying to figure out how you would be using the pine straw as part of Easter...

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    2. Better the sermon than the cake!

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    3. Ha! I suppose I could work the pine straw in as a cover-up for a place where there is no new life...but then I'd have to rewrite, and Good Lord, I don't want to do that. Isn't it funny how everything is potential sermon fodder when you do this week after week?

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    4. I was completely doing the same thing with the pine straw. I kept waiting for the cool explanation.

      I love the story about the Hallelujah chorus!

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  16. Good afternoon ladies, prayers for each of you, there seems to be a lot happening for people this Easter.

    I am doing well as far as preparation goes, the services is done and the sermon is at 90%, but I am struggling to finish it.

    It is a monologue, looking at Easter through Mary's (mother of Jesus) eyes. Starting with he is risen, reflecting on the crucifixion and Jesus life and coming back to the resurrection.

    But as with others while it started with well I am now feeling dry. The draft is here. If any of you feel like procrastinating I'd be happy for to hear your thoughts.

    One other question if I may, I have an all age activity, but it's pretty standard empty egg = empty tomb, what are other people doing, I would love to do something different.

    Prayers for all that are on Easter journeys

    Em

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    1. Not sure where your all age activity fits in the day or service, but our youth and family director is taking kids on a treasure hunt for Jesus around the whole church Easter morning. She's got little signs hidden in each room that say "He isn't here!" When they've been to the last room together she'll say something about how he wasn't in the tomb when the women got there and he isn't stuck in any one place anywhere, or something like that. I think they'll love it. It could be adapted into a worship piece with kids, too, I think.

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    2. That might just work, and could finish with the rather cliché statement that he is in here, pointing to heart.

      mmm. thinking, thinking,

      Thank you She Rev

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  17. Stepping away from the distracting computer screen for a bit. I will soooo be back.

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  18. I am very grateful that the sunrise service is being done by one of the other clergy in our Ecumenical Churches group and as I am the only one of the town's clergy who has been to all 10 of the services this week I am making a decision not to go!! (feeling a bit guilty but will learn to live with that!)

    I have new members joining tomorrow (first time I am presiding at such a service so getting that ready is nerve-wracking) and a few other "extras" at the service so realistically the sermon will need to be short and is probably the least of my worries.

    I found a whole lot of plastic eggs at the supermarket yesterday that you take apart and put stuff inside so I am now looking at all the signs I can put in them - flowers, eggs, stones, crosses, chicks/bunnies, lambs etc. - so that I can send the kids on an egg hunt which can then be used to tell the Easter story. I hope the egg hunt will appeal to the little ones and the bigger ones will get the meaning of the symbols.

    Marathon is almost at an end!!! I go on holiday (again!!) next week too and so feel the need of it!

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    1. I have a set of plastic eggs that I use like that to tell the Holy Week story (basically Palm Sunday thru the tomb, and leave off the final empty egg) in school chapel, grades K-6. In 13 years, I have done it about 4 times and the kids love it; they also do very well with figuring out the symbols. I have the eggs numbered and in a basket because of time constraints. Anyway, I am betting it will go over really well for your congregation!

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  19. Good morning.
    Preaching Mark tomorrow. Letting it stand at the original ending without attaching either optional ending. I preface the reading with sharing that information with the congregation.

    I wrote about 1/2 on Thursday and the Spirit changed direction for me...so the second half...needs to appear today.

    I was able to take a little time for myself yesterday. I "baked" my eggs to dye today (Alton Brown method...works great) and tried the Resurrection rolls (on FB group page) which I am going to use for the kids.

    Off and running....well metaphorically anyway.

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    1. Resurrection rolls? Can you share the link? I can't find it!

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    2. They are a bit sticky on the bottom but worked great. Make sure you pinch all the sides together for a good seal.

      Resurrection Rolls

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    3. OK...that link didn't work

      http://go.tipjunkie.com/ea/200/homegrownmom.com/creating-family-times/resurrection-rolls-an-easy-easter-treat/1689

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    4. I also looked for it and couldn't find it, although found the fantastic Jesus on Twitter you tube video

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    5. Baked eggs? How has my Alton Brown fanatic husband not heard about these yet? Guess who's going to Google next!

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  20. Good morning pals!

    I am celebrating a holy moment this morning. Beloved and I were out for our walk in our tiny town and a little girl from my church was out playing in her yard. When she saw us she said hello, talked about her yard, then she gave me a hug and said she missed me and that she couldn't wait for tomorrow because it was Easter. That made my heart sail.

    I told beloved that I was so joyous that I wanted to skip and dance for the rest of our walk. So she dared me to do it. As I joyously skipped down the street we noticed the treasurer's house on the hill, she told me to stop skipping so that the treasure doesn't have to wonder about the new pastor.

    Will be preaching on Mark pondering how the new life that resurrection brings can be quite frightening. Thinking of using the example of how newly recovering addicts families' reacts to the changes that happen when said addict comes hope from treatment.

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    1. Thanks be to God! I say keep on skipping! :)

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    2. I've been thinking along the same lines - were they terrified because of the empty tomb and the angel or was the thing that really frightened them was the thought that Jesus said he would rise and he did - then everything else Jesus said -all that stuff about the kingdom of God - must be true too!

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    3. Ramona, I napped with your comment in my head. When I woke up I put it in my sermon. Thanks!

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  21. I'm taking advantage of the calendar this year - after talking about April Fool's Day on Palm Sunday, this week I'm focusing on Easter as the "8th day" - the day of new creation, already begun. And stringing together examples of ways that the 8th day springs forth in our life - the alcoholic who knows for this moment, I don't have to drink - and a new "day" begins for him; the grieving woman who sees the sun shining and hears birds singing and realizes with a start that joy has crept back into her heart - etc. Then tying it in with Mary's "8th day," (John reading) giving her a new witness to share, and Paul's "8th day" (from 1 Corinthians 15 reading), a new purpose in life, and Peter's "8th day" (from Acts 10 reading), a new, expanded community to be a part of. It works in my head - let's see if I can get it down on paper.

    Not fully connecting with any children's sermon ideas yet, though you've given several I could use. Hmmm...

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    1. So glad someone is doing the 8th day! I started thinking about that during the week, but my direction is already set another way.

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    2. Wow--8th day. That's a help. Am preaching Easter night on the Emmaus story. The meal at Emmaus is the 8th meal in Luke.

      Wondering if anyone else is preaching Easter night propers?

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  22. Okay, I think I have some life in the sermon now. Going to leave it for a while and take the dog someplace interesting.

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  23. I ditched my first draft and am done with a second that is much more satisfying. Am talking about the Isaiah passage, particularly the destruction of the shroud that looms over all peoples, and the discarded grave clothes found in the tomb. The end of death as the end, the end of being defined by the shroud that carries us into the tomb... Or something like that! It is 9:30pm Saturday here, and I will take one more look at it over breakfast. We have one service at 10am, lots of children involved in different parts of the service but I somehow think they will find the Easter Egg hunt (I helped our Sunday School co-oridnator stuff 300 some plastic eggs with candy this afternoon) the crowning glory of the day!

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  24. Wow! This party has really taken off! I got out of bed later than I thought, but also later than I hoped. It was a rough night for my older daughter. She saw a exhibit about pirates yesterday and as I feared it gave her nightmares - not even nightmares. She couldn't even get to sleep because of the scary thoughts plaguing her minds. It was the up close discussion about a cannon that did her in. I tried several times to get her down and sleeping in her bed, but at midnight I decided she could just come sleep in our bed for a bit then I would move her to her own bed (or her brother's bed with him because I didn't think I'd be able to lift her to the top bunk). She and I shared my little space until 3:00 a.m. (not great sleep for me) until I carried her upstairs.

    Oy. Now I'm up trying to finish up the order of worship for the 8:00 a.m. service, the closest we get to sunrise. The worship team starts practice in about 30 minutes, so I need to get this delivered to them so they can add the words to the songs they are leading. I'll also see if I can stick around to help put up the gazillions of butterflies we are using to decorate the sanctuary.

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  25. Wow, it's been busy here already!

    On the topic of self-care, I decided last night that since I am using Mark at both the VIgil tonight and tomorrow's services I don't really have to have two separate sermons as I've done in past. The choir will have to hear it three times, but oh, well. And then after deciding that I let myself watch an episode of "West Wing" and go to bed; also slept in this morning.

    There is a tiny part of me that feels like I'm "cheating" by not writing two different sermons....ack. But I think I'm sticking with my decision. I've had two or three different ideas but couldn't get going on any of them yesterday afternoon between services, so we'll see where it goes now.

    I did finish Marcus Borg's The Last Week last night. It is definitely worth the read, and really informed my sermons for Palm Sunday and yesterday.

    I won't have any family here for Easter, and while I will miss them, I am also glad that I don't have to cook for anyone.

    Ok, must get writing. I *think* everything is ready for the Vigil tonight, but I need to go over this afternoon and make sure.

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    1. You are not cheating. Stick with it. The goal is to proclaim the gospel, not proclaim it a number of different ways.

      I get the relief in not cooking for anyone. Sometime mid-week my husband decided to invite people to our house for Easter dinner. The main dish is already cooked and other things will be relatively easy to put together, but the house is in Holy Week Disorder!

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    2. It won't harm the choir one bit to hear the same sermon three times. Maybe they'll remember some of it! (I'm very cynical about what congregations retain of sermons!!)
      I am preaching the same sermon twice -- the choir can listen to it twice!

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    3. Thanks for the reminder about Borg's book - I wanted to re-read the chapter on Easter!

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  26. Things are hopping this morning!

    I've got an old manuscript of a Mark Easter sermon that I'm trying to rework but will probably end up rewriting entirely. Ending with verse 8. It's not very joyous, but thanks for the idea of hope instead of joy. Maybe I can work with that. Hm.

    I think hubby can give me some time this afternoon, but we have an Easter party before that. I need to get our stuff together (when the kids get older, does it still require toting so much stuff around? Please give me some hope here!).

    Glad to have companions today!

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    1. Not if you teach them to pack their own bag. :-)

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    2. Definitely agree. If they pack their own bag AND are required to carry it, it's not so bad. At least that's what I've witnessed. Mine are still little, too.

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    3. But probably more toting them around -- and the hours are much later! Don't kid yourself it gets easier -- it just gets different. But still such a blessing!

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  27. Greetings Gals and Pals.
    I am ready to shout He is Risen! Not ready to preach it yet. That is a whole other challenge. But very ready to focus in new life on the other side of the worst imaginable. This church and her people are so there. Leaning hard on the H.S. to help is al hear and believe. Meeting my fabulous worship team to set up our full size empty tomb and garden. I will be back...

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    1. Celeste, that sounds amazing! Be sure to get pictures, I want to see!

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    2. Frederick Buechner on the meaning resurrection: "The worst thing is never the last thing!" I built my Easter sermon around that phrase last year.

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    3. Yeah, I want to see pictures, too. I'm going to try to get some of our sanctuary draped with butterflies.

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    4. Have a garden tomb pic up on my facebook. I think I know how to post to the Revgal facebook page... still no sermon, but the fabulous pre church Easter Punch will featur peeps floating on a light green pond of ice.

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  28. Off to ponder something else for a while, can't seem to find my ending for the sermon.
    Maybe it's the bit before the ending that I'm struggling with.
    Or maybe it's just the nerves kicking given that it's a monologue.

    Regardless, going to go bake some scones and come back to it.

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  29. I am another who wants to see that lairos sermon! What a fabulous concept, and what fun :-)

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  30. I'm looking forward to coming back in a bit and reading all your thoughts and sermons! I've been on Mark and have nicked that old gem "It's Friday, but Sunday's a-comin'" (though of course I will be preaching it on Sunday!).
    The children's message is done too (is this an Easter miracle?!)
    Sermon is here if I've got the link right (sudden mental block!)

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  31. Still not a word on the Easter sermon - I feel drained of words. Off to Acolyte practice, then back home to meet the air conditioner guy (yes ac already needed a few days here). I truly hope I will not be starting to write the Easter sermon after the Vigil tonight, but I may be. That may be Just the Way It Is - thanks for the Bruce Hornsby ear worm!! All I need is one more sermon to get through the last three services tomorrow...

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  32. Hey hey, good people (accidentally first wrote "god people" - which is also true!). Y'all have been mighty busy partying already! I am getting a late start. I let myself sleep til 8:30 this morning which meant I got a full 8 hours of sleep and it felt amazing. My husband took it as a sign that I was feeling good and not anxious about where I am with the sermon, but that wasn't it at all. I just knew I would need that sleep in order to make it through today (and tomorrow).

    Last night's Tenebrae service went really great and was probably our best attendance so far. But after 4 services in the last 2 days (2 of which I preached at, 1 of which I designed and coordinated but didn't preach in or lead, and 1 of which I just participated as a congregant), I feel kind of done. Am praying for extra helpings of the HS to get me through.

    I'm preaching John and am writing from scratch (the last time I preached John was maybe 12 years ago and is not worth drawing from. At all.) Okay. Better get cranking. Glad to be partying with y'all today.

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  33. I was annoyed that the pets didn't seem to know it is the weekend and as usual demanded breakfast before bright and definitely early; however, it has turned out to be a good thing as I have found more of my sermon hiding in my mind. Thanks for the prayers and words of encouragement about the challenge of preaching Easter from a more difficult place in one's own life; you really did lift me up. I especially appreciated the distinction of joy and hope., because I do still have the latter.

    Off to the church work party soon, then final prep for tonight's Vigil sermon, some jogging, and a bit of grocery shopping; with any luck, the rest of tomorrow's sermon will fall into place and all will be well. I can dream, right?

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  34. I also slept in this morning and now I'm feeling like a slacker compared to all of you!

    I'm preaching Mark and I think I'm going to let the ending stand as is, maybe talk about how others tried to write a better ending and ask what kind of ending we're writing. I also like the idea of how the women were frightened not by the events of the morning but by what those events meant. And we've been doing a Lenten study/sermon series on fear, and in my text study this week, we were talking about the fear in the text and I said, "we've been doing fear, it's Easter and it's time to put the fear behind us" and one of the pastors said "That's your sermon."

    And I have a serious case of writer's block due to the fact that this is my first ever Easter sermon and I want to just read the Gospel and say "He is risen!" and sit down.

    Baptism at 2 today,even though I don't like private baptisms. I agreed to this one because I have a nursing home service right after worship tomorrow and was worried that including a baptism on Easter would make the service run over too much and I would be late to the nursing home. Now I'm regretting the decision and wish I could incorporate the baptism into tomorrow's worship. Oh well - Lesson learned.

    There's also two 80+ birthday open houses this afternoon, so I feel a little stressed for time.

    Time to follow you-all's example and get productive!

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    1. So true about wanting to read the gospel and then shut up. That is my biggest challenge in Holy Week preaching, that I feel like I really can't improve on what has already been said!

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    2. Ramona - I have been told that one of my predecessors did read the Gospel, proclaim "he is Risen" and then sat. Everyone thought he was mad at them. Maybe it was the tone of voice?!

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    3. My "first" Easter was 4 years ago, but 6 years into ministry. I couldn't believe how I felt like a total newbie! Prayers for you. Enjoy it!

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  35. Mine at last more or less finished. I have taken my inspiration largely from Dr. Cynthia Campbell - "When is an ending not the end?" On textweek.
    I can't wait to rest after tomorrow! My sister arrives from Zimbabwe on Wednesday so I intend to take the week off. Having Holy Humour Sunday next week and am hoping I have persuaded a retired priest to preach!

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    1. I'm doing our first ever Holy Humor service next Sunday so I'm very interested in hearing what others to. I've never been to one so I'm looking at stuff on line and trying to imagine what it will be like.

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  36. Okay, I have a draft. It's not the sermon I started yesterday (actually any of them because I kept starting over) but this one flowed better. Inspired by both Borg and David Lose, I am focusing on the abrupt ending in Mark and how that is nonetheless a message of HOPE for us. I'm going to let is sit for a little while now.

    And I am sticking with my resolve to use the same sermon tonight and tomorrow.

    It's a beautiful day here, if a bit chillier than I would prefer. Hope everyone is hanging in there.

    And let me say again how much I appreciate this community! This would be a far lonelier and more difficult task without you all!

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    1. Definitely praying for you and all those around you as you preach and bring hope and good news in the wake of all that's happened... both the destructiveness and the community efforts.

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  37. Dear Son decided to be awake most of the night, so I'm just now arising here in the Far West. I'm drained from Good Friday and have two Easter sermon documents open with not a word written. Definitely thinking Easter hope, not Easter joy... right now. We also have a special service just for children tomorrow night (typically twice a month, but also on Xmas and Easter). We'll have a 30 minute worship service with lots of wiggling and giggling, followed by an Easter egg hunt. I have to make the powerpoint for that service at some point as well. And it's snowing. If we can get 2 inches in Anchorage today, we will have broken all previous records, making the 2011-2012 snow season the deepest ever in this part of AK.

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  38. Well...I think the sermon is finished...you can find it here

    I went with an real original title "Afraid and Amazed" lol.

    Now, on to getting the sanctuary ready with the paraments etc, and other preparations.

    I told one of my FB friends...I was preaching a more non-traditional route...he responded...I'm letting Jesus do the preaching...I think perhaps he has the better plan.

    Deep grace and deep peace to all of you on this Holy Saturday.

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  39. Hi all, back from baseball practice and the Easter bunny is all set up for They Boy's return @3:30 (we do bunny on Saturday).

    Here's the thing about Mark - the earliest versions end with 'and'... "So they went out and fled from the tomb for terror and amazement had seized them; and..."

    It's like THE BEST Choose Your Own Adventure book EVER. Do you want to tell the disciples? Turn to Luke 24:9. Do you want to confuse the risen Christ with the gardener? Turn to John 20:15. Do you want to worship the risen Christ on a mountain top? Go to Matthew 28:16.

    Jesus is here. Jesus has gone ahead of us. It's up to us to choose how we're going to live out the adventure/Good News - Rise up!

    Or something....

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    1. Not that I watch old shows or anything (and with my much older crowd this will work better because they don't know about Choose Your Own Adventure Books) ... but, fwiw, there's this MASH episode where BJ gets a care package with a mystery book in it. Mail has been so scarce that everyone wants to read the book so when he finishes a chapter he rips it off the book and gives it to someone else. Each chapter is passed around that way through the whole camp. He gets to the end and the last page is missing so they are left with "the murderer is." Everyone is going nuts trying to figure out the end of the story. They finally call the author who is so old and has written so many books she gives them the wrong answer. Amazingly, missing the end of the book kept them engaged with the story long after they had read the next to last page.

      I think sometimes we want the Easter story to be all wrapped up nice and pretty like a paperback book. Then we can be done with it and move on with our lives with barely another thought.

      Maybe there is a method in the madness of no "real" ending to Mark's version of the story. It leaves things hanging and reminds us that the story is still being lived out and that we need to be part of the ending.

      Peter Drucker said, “The problem in my life and other people's lives is not the absence of knowing what to do, but the absence of doing it.

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    2. Hmmmm.... turns out 'gar' is most often translated as 'for' so that means you can't do a Stephen Colbert 'yes, and...' thing but you can still do the 'living out the next part of the story' thing.

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    3. Even if John is my "main" sermon and Mark the "sunrise" homily is done. Finding other "it hasn't ended" stories counts as working on the sermon, right?

      Giacomo Puccini, the great musician who wrote Madame Butterfly, La Boehme, Tosca, and so many other majestic operas, was stricken with cancer in 1922. So what did he do? He sat down to write a new opera - Turandot. His students asked him, “But suppose you die?” “Oh,” he replied confidently, “never fear. My students will finish it!”

      Puccini died in 1924…and as he predicted, his students did finish his music. The premier of the great opera, Turandot, was held in Milan at La Scala Opera House under the direction of Puccini’s best student – Arturo Toscanini.

      The gala performance of Turandot proceeded and came to that point in the music where the composer had finally laid down his pen. Tears streamed down Toscanini’s face. He put down his baton and turned to the audience and said, “Thus far, the master wrote…and then the master died.”

      Then, picking up his baton, his face wreathed with smiles and determination, Toscanini shouted to the audience, “BUT HIS DISCIPLES FINISHED HIS MUSIC!” And they played on through the grand finale.

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  40. I have a very rough draft - comments greatly desired.

    I'm going to read Purple's sermon and probably steal - oops I mean 'borrow' from it later. Now I have to get ready for the baptism and the open houses.

    Happy sermonating for those writing. Happy self-caring for those napping and other fun things!

    Be back later to see how the party is going!

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    1. I LOVE it!!
      "All the rules of how the world works were crushed under the stone that was rolled away." - brilliant! And I loved your last line "and that's enough to leave anyone speechless".

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  41. Back from an all age interactive early vigil! And now going to read back over your sermons and hope that doing so doesn't give me the jitters about mine! The thing about (unusually) getting it done with a bit of breathing space is that I do then get the jitters about it (even before I read a load of brilliant insights here!).

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    1. That is exactly my problem with getting done early. I second guess it all the way to Sunday.

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  42. Ok so, I have decided to leave it almost as it was, realizing that with it being a dramatic narrative I will embellish it as I go along. So as long as I am happy with the structure, which I think I am, it should be fine.
    I am sure this is what I am meant to be doing, but am really nervous about it. More nervous that I have been in a while.

    There is a copy of it here It's called Through a mother's eyes, and it's Mary's reflections on the the Easter story.

    Prayers for nerves would be appreciated, I'm not normally this nervous

    Blessings to you all

    Em

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  43. omg, 130 central time and 100 comments! holy cow!

    I'm not preaching tomorrow...I'm doing the children's time (the who rolled the stone one I mentioned either here or on FB earlier in the week) and being the liturgist. So, an easy sunday for me, being the decorative one. ;-)

    The one year I did get to preach on Easter was on Mark 3 years ago, and it was kind of an awesome-ish sermon. Not my best ever, but given the pressures of Easter i think it was pretty good! ;-) I talked about the ending and how strange it was, but tied it back to the beginning where Mark says that he is writing "the beginning of the good news"--so perhaps the ending isn't actually an ending, it's just the end of the beginning, and we continue the story. Or something.

    Now back to petting the kitties, cleaning the house, and packing for the post-easter vacation. To say that I can't wait would be an understatement.

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    1. Martin Kahler said that Mark's gospel is a passion narrative with an extended introduction.

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    2. oh, I'm glad you said that about the beginning. I read that earlier in the week and thought it was smart, and then forgot completely about it. Gracias.

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  44. OMG OMG Am I comment 100. Here's my sermon rough draft.

    http://godguurrlll.blogspot.com/2012/04/who-will-roll-away-stone.html

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  45. aaahh poop, missed it by one. Bless you Teri.

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    1. heehee. :-) if only blogger had a "like" button a-la Facebook!

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  46. I've got a beginning and an ending but not a middle! This is not usually the way I write - I usually have my ending in mind but I don't write it until the end. Not sure how this change-up is going to affect how I write, but we'll see!

    I'm trying to take heart from what Gail O'Day says in FotW about this text: "The good news of Easter for the preacher is that on this day, there is no requirement for homiletical invention. Familiarity contains the seeds of exultation." I seem to be putting together a pretty straightforward proclamation - no narrative but the gospel narrative, no illustration or analogy - and I'm trying to trust that the good news is sufficient!

    O'Day also says this: "The Easter Sunday sermon should be the year's easiest sermon to prepare." And to that, I say: BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

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    1. I will meet your BAHAHAHAHAHAHA and raise you a "yeah right O'Day...you keep believing that"

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    2. I'll see your "yeah right" and raise you... you know what I'm going to say...

      a LEIROS!

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    3. Hee! Y'all are hilarious.

      Gail O'Day was my homiletics professor, and she was truly awesome. But she's a professor, not a pastor, and what she says makes theoretical sense but not practical sense! Half the people who will be in my pews tomorrow won't have been there since Christmas Eve or last Easter, so yeah, this is by far NOT the easiest sermon to prepare!

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  47. Well, I tucked my head down and hand-writ the durn thing. Now to type and see where that lands me page wise.

    Also, making sense wise.

    Also, after a diet coke break.

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  48. Hello everyone!
    I'm preaching Mark tomorrow. The first draft came pretty easily yesterday, which always makes me nervous. I'm re-working it now between soccer games.
    My self care was to go out for dinner last night with good friends and lots of wine.
    Just had to re-arrange the flowers in the chancel because we forgot about the handbell tables when we were setting it all up. Lairos! I love the handbells. I just wish they didn't need 3 8 foot tables set up across the entire chancel. Impedes traffic flow.
    We are also welcoming new members tomorrow. And then I'll take a nap.

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    1. Lairos will go into the RevGal lexicon from this day on!!

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    2. We have the exact same problem with the handbell tables. I have this fantasy of tables that somehow rise up from the ground, handbells in place, at precisely the moment they are needed, then descending again and covered so that they are not exactly where people need to be walking to come up for communion. Or something like that ... ;-)

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  49. Yikes! I didn't think I was gone that long, but look at this party roaring! I will admit now that I don't think I'll get to comment on every post, but I'll read through and see what's up. Can I get anyone anything?

    I spent the morning at church helping to get things decorated with a super fun worship team. We have butterflies hanging everywhere from the chandeliers and everything. It was one of those "it's easier to ask forgiveness than permission" things so we didn't contact the Property Committee. We also didn't count on the new chair being present this morning cleaning the church since the custodian took this weekend off. Good thing he liked it! :) It's cool now, but it'll be even cooler tomorrow when we get the butterflies the kids made up on the wooden cross in the middle of the early service.

    Took the kids to the town Easter egg hunt in the drizzle, although it's not so much an egg hunt as a candy scramble. All three are on their way to nap land, so instead of working on my sermon, I think I'm going to do the exact same thing. Self care. It was my idea right?

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    1. Would love to see the "end result"

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  50. Hi all,
    REad your notes and many of them SO HELPFUL -- but no time to comment. Did my Saturday morning stuff (exercise, big breakfast, supervise 9 yo mowing lawn, clean kitchen, etc) and now have to go on to sermon.

    Our conversation yesterday made me realize how much I was going for Clever and Relevant rather than Good News. Which means starting over. But actually excited about where Im headed, so I'm hopeful it will come quickly! I have to leave in about an hour to go prep the sanctuary for tomorrow, so not! much! time!

    And thinking of you Julia, in the snow. We finally have a sunny day here in Oregon, so I'm trying to keep the children outside. They kieep wanting to come in for video games, the little kooks.

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  51. Wow. Just wanted to jot down a few notes on virtual paper before I nodded off to nap land and out flowed my whole outline. Not sure it all fits together great, but I never have an outline at 2:30 in the afternoon. I'll take it and work on it after bedtime tonight, and who knows, I may have a sermon before midnight. Ha. Who am I kidding? :)

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    1. Stephanie - it's catching . I"m flowing too.....

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  52. The Boy is home! Heading outside to play with one of the Easter basket presents - a new baseball.

    The typing will continue in a bit.

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  53. And, I'm back, finally, after a beautiful celebration of life/ witness to the resurrection, and luncheon, and negotiating staff leiros (THANKS KATHRYNZJ),and getting home and dosing up on Cadbury's Cream Eggs (hey, I heard the resurrection preached at the funeral), and a 20 minute power nap. And now, I begin. John. Focusing on "Whom are you looking for?" With the hunch that, on Easter Sunday, as we listen to the gospel, we are looking for ourselves-- a model of discipleship that we feel connected with, one that helps us to step into the stream of faith.

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  54. Ugh. I had two hours to write a draft for tomorrow morning before needing to get ready to leave for the Vigil tonight, but instead of writing I napped for most of that, and good thing I set an alarm to wake me up. Apparently I needed it...but I also needed tomorrow's sermon.

    So now I'm probably cutting it close by continuing to try and pull something together. I can probably finish it later tonight, after the Vigil, but I DO NOT want to be starting it from a blank page tonight.

    Preaching Mark, definitely using all the grammar stuff, probably pulling on the sermon I did three years ago, but still having trouble getting started.

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  55. I am actually dressed and ready for the VIgil earlier than I need to be (unless I've forgotten something) so I'm going to make a quick *bux run ...and then we're off to the races, so to speak. I love the Vigil and we have a baptism, but there are a lot of pieces to fall together, so it makes me a little nervous.

    I guess it's too early to say the "A" word,so I'll be back later?

    Have we ever hit 200 comments before? Looks like we might be headed there today at this rate :)

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    1. We have, a couple of times. Holy Saturday three years ago was one of them. I think maybe there was a T-Fig gone wild around then, too. ;-)

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    2. Also, did you know I would look this up?

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    3. I was hoping you would look it up, because I was wildly curious but too lazy to investigate myself. ;)

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  56. ok, off to get things going at church. hopefully will have some help! at 1400 words, so some polishing to do, so see you later.

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  57. How many Cadbury creme eggs can a person eat in a day before she gets sick? It's a question I'm willing to test with personal experimentation.

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    1. It depends on the gap between eggs I reckon! :D

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    2. Ha! So I just need to pace myself! I can do that. I think.

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    3. Eggxactly (I'm sorry, I'll get my coat!) it's all in the pace!

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    4. I need to find some candy in this house -- stat.

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    5. HA! Chelley, you are cracking me up! (pun intended)

      Martha, YES!! You need some candy!!

      p.s. - I have now switched to Reese's Peanut Butter Eggs, so the answer to my original question will remain a mystery. I am sorry I failed in my scientific experiment.

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    6. Chocolate that's what I'm missing ...

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    7. The Reeses Peanut Butter are my candy of choice today for sermon-writing!! I have plenty to share

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  58. Though our services so far this week have been wonderful, I am really dragging and down in the dumps today. Fun though to hear about all of the plans flowing from this group - I am lifted by this group.

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  59. Okay, rough draft (and I do mean ROUGH, but heck, it's written) is done and I am off to change and get over to church for the Vigil! Squee! Hoping all of you will finish your sermons while I'm away. :)

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  60. Would it be *completely* inappropriate to attack one of the Easter eggs bought for family members? Maybe I didn't count them right and have too many! :D

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  61. All my Easter prep has been church-related, so there are no flowers, no jelly beans, no nothin'. I can't even find the Holy Easter Egg tablecloth (did we not use it last year? so perplexing...). So I put my mother's darling china bunnies on the mantelpiece, with an Easter card that came in the mail today (thank you, kathrynzj and The Boy!). My kids will be on the 5:15 bus from Beantown, so we'll have pizza when they get here.
    I like both my sermons, so I'm going to print them out now. I did some significant rehab on the one that was an adaptation, so it has a new beginning, a new ending, some rearranged middle and a whole section about Paul that wasn't there the last time. I feel better about it, mostly because it sounds like I love and believe in our Jesus now, instead of sounding like I'm just having a cup of tea and contemplating the possibility of him.
    Anyway, I think there's part of a bar of extremely dark, non-Easter chocolate around here somewhere, and there is definitely a bag of delicious nuts from Whole Foods, and I'm going to let those tide me over until pizza time!

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    1. I so wish I had the confidence to say "I like both my sermons" (or just the one as the case is here). I was pleased with it as I finished but as time goes on the confidence drains (as SheRev already commented on). Ho hum!

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    2. Well, that's partly a determination to like them. :-)
      The last month or so of Sundays have been vocally appreciated, and this week people have been challenging me to top Palm Sunday, which makes me worry. Is the bar too high now? Aargh! Anyway, I've given a sincere effort to both, and I think the love of Jesus will shine through, and that's the main thing, isn't it?

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    3. Which really is where I was last night on the partially reconstructed sermon that was making me unhappy. I was lying in bed thinking, where is Jesus? I mean, he appeared, had his feet touched, told Mary to stop it. But really, where was he? In my words and in my life? As I got drowsy, I thought, I wish I could hug Jesus, even if he had to tell me to stop. I hope that comes across in a non-weird way. ;-)

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  62. Have returned from the Easter party and our third Easter egg hunt of the season (which is about three too many--I find it hard to find any redeeming quality in them--but I digress). I'm worn out from a week of kid wrangling and have already spent way too much time catching up on the internet.

    Onward, to the sermon! Thanks for all the helpful ideas and encouragement.

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    1. biggest kerfluffle of the week at the church was over the timing of the Easter Egg hunt - ugh! If it was up to me there would not be one (I can say bravely bc it's not up to me).

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  63. Easter morning, and ... oops
    I set the alarm for pm instead of am and missed the sunrise service!!! I wasn't leading BUT.

    so The Lord is Risen Alleluia!!

    now to read some of your comments while I drink a second cup of green tea, still some in the pot, help yourself.

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    1. Ack! Well, Alleluia anyway!!!

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    2. oh no! I have messed up the am/pm before too

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    3. I am now checking my clock and setting a second alarm. ack! happy easter, Pearl!

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  64. Sermon mostly done--I think. Not yet sure of children's time idea. But--survived family Easter dinner with in-laws at my home. Still struggling though as all week I've been fighting some mysterious bug. I almost feel like I have the flu (achy all over but it comes and goes) and sometimes feverish, but no other symptoms. I guess if I have to be sick this week, an illness that doesn't take my voice or confine me to the bathroom will be okay. All that's left is Easter Breakfast and one worship service and then I'm pretty sure a holy nap is on the agenda tomorrow afternoon!

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  65. GAH! I wanted this to be one of those sermons that just flowed right out of me, but it's not, and on top of that I feel like I'm basically just saying again everything that John just said. BAH! I think all the sugar is starting to cloud my brain....

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    1. John has held up pretty well over time. And it takes repetition to remember things. Maybe you're okay anyway

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    2. Thanks, Vicar! John tells it so beautifully, why mess with a good thing, right?

      Thanks for the reassuring words. :)

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  66. Prayers walked (in neighborhood near church), Bulletins printed, parking arranged mostly, flowering of the cross figured out, desk cleared off (this is important to me when I come in on Sunday morning). Now to finish sermon. In light of the tornado damage 25 miles south of the church on Tuesday, I'm preaching resurrection power in today's world using this quote from this week's Upper Room -
    Every struggle has within it the seeds of hope; every calamity carries with it the possibility of redemption.
    Need to move from tiny outline to fuller outline. Back in a bit to say I'm done hopefully.

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  67. Easter Vigil in a hour, then Sunrise Service, then the biggie -- and then -- a meeting! A 91yo former member died this morning and I met with her daughter this afternoon; another meeting tomorrow to try to get all the siblings' input on the graveside service after having made a first stab at the bulletin this afternoon. My first Easter as a pastor and them, immediately (Mark, anyone?), my first funeral.

    Preaching Practicing Resurrection tomorrow -- a little Wendell Berry, which my rural congregation may enjoy, but most of the focus is on (1) resurrection is scary and we might run away at first and (2) But. Go. Tell.

    Blessings on all of your final preparations!

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  68. What a rockin' party today! I've put out all my pine straw, and now I'm going to look at my stuff for tomorrow and hopefully relax tonight. Max the dog has kept me company while my cats have been somewhat distracting...but such is the nature of cute kitties.

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  69. It is finished. The sermon that is. At least for now. Going to run out for little fuzzy balls and pipe cleaners to make props for children's time. Caterpillar (fuzzy balls glued onto felt) into cocoon (sock) - butterfly (tissue paper)out. Example in nature - death to life.

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  70. A much-improved sermon after some work. Now to see to the prayers and whatever else I'm in charge of tomorrow. (It's a pulpit supply gig).

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  71. Threw the baseball back and forth in the backyard with my 7 year old. I kept wanting to shout up into the heavens, "Hey Dad, can you SEE this?" So cool.

    Still need to type it up and then I'm sure edit. First - shower.

    Sounds like folks are packing themselves well... or well enough. Hang in there!

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  72. The pizza is ordered, and the bus is due in 20-25 minutes. I'm heading to the ATM machine (because young adults are *expensive*) and then to the bus station!!!!
    Meanwhile, my sermons, my robe, my stole, the bulletins for the off-site Sunrise service are all in the car ready for the morning. I'll check back in later, but I'm ready!

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    1. You are a smart woman. For many reasons, but for packing the car the night before especially. Saves soooo much stress in the mornings.

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  73. Well, I am going to add another comment...since I last posted, I squeaked out my intro, which made my spouse crack up, so that's good. But then, the day took off with a trip to Target for Easter stuff and a couple of other errands, a birthday celebration that included a trip to visit rescued puppies, long lunch, and afternoon coffee/birthday cake; then I picked up another dog to be returned to an owner, then remembered I volunteered to get easter "bags" for the egg hunt tomorrow and flowers to flower the cross, and oh my! I laid down for nap, and now back to "REALLY???" I am thinking to myself, "Really? I am not finished with bad bear yet?"

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  74. Dinner done - 1 hour until time to leave for Vigil, so it's time to get some words on paper - I'm going in Gals!!

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    1. Thank you to whomever said - who are you looking for? Clicks in my writing

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    2. I'm so glad to hear this. I'm still struggling. But this party is so encouraging. Blessings!

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  75. I'm hoping the same place that has those mini eggs has the gift cards I should get for the token Easter gifts.

    I'll be back. Y'all keep heading toward 200 so I don't have to break out the corny jokes

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  76. I'm just trying to keep my cats from playing hockey with my malted milk eggs.

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  77. And, I have high hopes that preaching the Easter sermon will be fun. Those Lenten sermons were not all that fun...

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  78. It's 5:10 pm mountain time. Still no sermon just a bunch of notes strung together. I think a poem is waiting to be birthed. That takes time and the right frame of mind. Just back from offering prayers for the dying to one parishioner and anointing for healing to another. Time to get to work, but first I have to shift my paradigms. Hans Kung where are you when I need you? Glad to have some company in the struggle but wondering if anyone else is doing Luke and the Easter night propers. Feels like I'm quite alone in that (Hope I'm not alone at the service!)

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  79. It's 7:15 and I have no idea what we're doing for dinner and I kind of don't care because my belly is full of Cadbury eggs, Reese's eggs, Starburst jellybeans, and Cheetos. It's a darn good thing I ran yesterday but oy, do I feel nasty.

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  80. This is comment 183!! And I am done - Thanks be to God!! Now I can go off to the Vigil without the sermon for tomorrow's services hanging over my head. Thank you to Pearl Down Under and Magdalene 6127 - you both contributed thoughts that fit into the way I was headed.
    I will check in later to cheer on those still writing and offer more chocolate. I love this group of smart and funny pastors - you all rock!!

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    1. Mine is over on my blog - I can never get the link thingie right.

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  81. Random: I wished an online friend of mine, "Happy Pesach" and he wrote back and asked if I was a MOT. I had to look that up. It means "member of the tribe." I learned something today!

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    1. I wrote back and told him that I was an AOT (admirer of the tribe) or FOT (friend of the tribe). :)

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    2. (I am trying to nudge us towards 200).

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    3. (I am also trying to avoid the hard work of editing my sermon, which I think *might* be sort of done).

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    4. Hey earthchick

      What do you get when you pour boiling water down a rabbit hole?

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    5. Ooh! Ooh! I don't know! What do you get?

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    6. I want to know, Vicar!! What?

      And Earthchick, I am finished in my head but not on paper. It's a short one, because of course we have a commissioning of the Misssion Trippers, and reception of New Members AND singing of the Hallelujah! Chorus.

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  82. Okay, why did the chicken go to the library?

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    Replies
    1. I don't have a joke, but those were so bad they were hilarious.

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  83. I don't know! Why DID the chicken go to the library?

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  84. so, are you all having an easter egg hunt after church tomorrow?

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