Dear friends and members of St. Matt's,
Happy Easter! And welcome to this bright Easter season. Where Lent is 40 days, Easter is 50 - a tangible reminder that God always wants us to live more in a space of rejoicing and gratitude than in penitence. I hope you will accept the invitation to live in joy and gratitude in this season.
Speaking of gratitude, I'd like to begin by expressing mine. I'm so grateful for all the hands who helped to make Lent, Holy Week, and our celebration of Easter as sacred and special as it was. As is always the case, there are many hands that work behind the scenes to help me create sacred space. And I'm grateful for all of those hands seen and unseen - if you helped to make this season what it was and keep us connected, thank you.
I'm especially grateful to our Choir who have worked incredibly hard these last few weeks to rehearse and record music for our worship. Their leadership and dedication has enhanced our worship and helped us all draw more near to Jesus. I'm also grateful to a very present and dedicated group of lectors who read and helped me to lead these many services, and to those who participated in our Passion readings. I'm always grateful to Sharon Pearson for leading and scheduling this faithful group. We have lay leaders and musicians who continue to lead Compline and Evening Prayer. Jen Angerame worked magic both inside the sanctuary and out as the Outdoor Sanctuary transformed throughout the last week or so. A few others made special arrangements and delivered flowers behind the scenes. Betsy Pettit continues to come in to care for the sanctuary and do the work we need done around the altar. You might have seen that there were a few Easter miracles on campus, too. The Easter Bunny turned up in the Outdoor Sanctuary, the tree elves made sure that our beloved tree behind the sanctuary bloomed despite the cold, and our tradition of the flowering cross came to life again as well. For all this and for all the elves who continue to make little miracles happen for us, I'm so grateful. Our WEPCO staff helped to make the space clean and ready both for visits and for worship. Vestry members made visitors welcome to the space for the first time in a year. And last but certainly not least, I'm grateful to our staff who have worked tirelessly in this season doing everything you can imagine. Nancy, Sam, and Matt all worked very hard to help us pray, worship, sing, and experience Holy Week & Easter in a new way. We are so blessed to have both a leadership team and a community that are dedicated, engaged, and gifted for our life together. And all of this reflects only some of the moving parts of this last season!
All of what we do as staff and leaders is for you, to help you connect and grow in your faith, to help this community grow together. So most importantly, thank you all for the parts you played in this holy season. Thank you to all of you who participated, read, sang, came to worship, stayed connected, explored our Outdoor Stations, hunted for Easter eggs, and took this journey with us. It was a joy and a privilege for me to be with you and to lead you in worship. What we did together last week was holy work and I know that God delights in us when we worship, serve, sing, and pray together.
Please take a look through our e-news this week. Even as we rest in gratitude, there are opportunities to give and to be involved. Please be in touch if you need anything. God loves you. And so do I.
Tags: Welcome from the Rector