Easter Message from Kenilworth Churches
Changing Church – Unchanging God:
Church Buildings, of all denominations, are closed in line with the Government’s instructions. There will also be no Church weddings or baptisms. However, Easter is not cancelled – even if it will be experienced in a very different way this year!
We are all instructed to stay at home, subject to important exemptions for key workers and for exercise and essential journeys. All public gatherings are rightly prohibited.
Naturally this means that Churches Together in Kenilworth & District (CTK&D) cannot conduct our customary Good Friday Walk of Witness, Outdoor Service, nor gather to raise the Cross on Abbey Hill, but there are a plethora of ways being discovered for people to gather online and share worship, prayer and reflection – both within and across congregations and denominations – and it means that, more than ever before, church is the people and not the building.
Church leaders of CTK&D are making their own arrangements to enable congregations to deepen and strengthen their Faith, and to provide practical support and pastoral care for the community. Through Holy Week and Easter, services, Bible studies and times of reflection will be taking place – live or recorded – and streamed to congregations via social media such as Facebook, YouTube and Zoom, or on websites – all are invited to join in. The www.lovekenilworth.org.uk website will help you link up to some of the opportunities.
It is a fact of history that Jesus was crucified some 2000 years ago on Good Friday, and the historical evidence provides no credible alternative to the claim that he did indeed rise again on Easter Sunday, but that first Easter Sunday, the disciples of Jesus were in lockdown – fearing for their lives if they went outside. Jesus entered their room, despite the locked doors, and said ‘Peace be with you’.
In common with all denominations and faiths, CTK&D are urging everyone to support the concerted international fight against Covid-19. Stay at home, look after each other, especially the vulnerable, and support the NHS and their key-worker partners who are struggling to protect, feed and support us – but don’t shut God out: he still offers those same Easter words of peace and hope to us all, even if we are in self-isolation.
We totally support what the Queen said in her speech on Palm Sunday – “The UK will succeed in its fight against the coronavirus pandemic”. The message ended with the words “we will meet again” – an apparent reference to Dame Vera Lynn’s bolstering war anthem We’ll Meet Again.
She clearly included all nations working transparently and in unison together. This is entirely in tune with the Gospel of Christ that it is THROUGH suffering together and with Christ on the cross (which is transitory), that we will reach the glory and joy of resurrection life and hope (which is eternal).-
We conclude this statement by repeating the recent words of Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury: “We are enabled to realise, quite counter-culturally, that everything that we have that is good, is a gift and not a right. Unlike God, we, as humans do not always have the answers.”