An Easter Message From the Rector

By Barry Parker, Rector

Posted on March 23, 2016

I am blessed to have a wonderful grandson, just over a year old. A few days ago I spent some time with him. It fascinates me to watch what captivates him. It is often simple – playing peek-a-boo accompanied with gales of giggles. Then the inevitable grumpy response when he cannot have all of the technology in his purview – phones, tablets, laptops – to play with. What characterizes all of his encounters with his unfolding world is wide-eyed, open-mouth, childhood WONDER.

Later that same day I spent some time watching the news. There I saw adults captivated by their world. I realized very quickly how at odds my ‘grown up world’ is with that of a young one. My world is cynical and jaded, often angry and reactionary, violent and manipulative. Decisions regarding major cultural, moral, ethical and political issues are so often made on the basis of sound bites, personal opinions and biases as well as plain ignorance. There is no wonder involved.

This even extends to our spirituality and faith life. So often we assume we know how the story ends and so we are in danger of approaching the deep things of life and death with a jaded cynicism, with a distinct lack of wonder.
Yet, if we read together the narratives of the last few days of Jesus’ life and through to the Crucifixion and beyond the empty tomb of the Resurrection – the adult way of viewing our world has a chance to be shifted from our usual ‘that's the way it is’ to wide-eyed, open-mouthed, WONDER.

A snippet from Aurora Leigh by the poet Elizabeth Barrett Browning:

“Earth's crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God,
But only he who sees takes off his shoes;
The rest sit round and pluck blackberries.”

We think we know the Easter story, but have we ever encountered the Easter story? If not, we are all in danger of eating a few blackberries and we miss the new world ‘afire with God.’

Join us as we encounter the power and presence of the living God, in the midst of life and death – where our only response can be wide-eyed, open-mouth WONDER. We will not be serving blackberries.

In Wonder,

(The Rev. Canon Dr.) Barry Parker
Rector (Senior Minister)