Here are selected resources to assist you with your Easter Sunday planning. Though I have separated the resources for Sunrise and Later Morning Service, you could use any of the resources at either service.
EASTER SUNRISE SERVICE
Call to Worship
One: We are standing on holy ground. We have entered a day of miracle and mystery. We are unsure of what it all means.
Many: Don’t be alarmed!
One: How can it be? How can the dead live again? How can a cross become and empty tomb?
Many: Jesus has risen!
One: Today is a day to experience. Today is a day to enact and embody. Today is a day to celebrate!
Many: See the place where they laid him!
Prayer (based on oldest known Christian hymn, “O Gladsome Light,” trans. Bridges, 1899) (unison)
O gladsome light, O grace of our creator’s face, the eternal splendor wearing; celestial, holy blest, our Savior Jesus Christ, joyful in your arising. As comes the morning, we see that light of resurrection, our common prayer outpouring. O God of might unknown, you, the risen Sun, and Spirit blest adoring. AMEN.
One: Down from the mountaintop, away from the empty tomb.
Many: Out of fear, out of trembling.
One: Out of runing, out of silence.
Many: Into mystery, into miracle.
One: Into Gospel, into good news.
Many: Into contagious joy, and Easter love. AMEN.
EASTER MORNING SERVICE
Call to Easter Worship
One: It seems that everyone had something to say:
MANY: Judas said: “give me 30 pieces of silver for his life.”
One: The crowds said: “Crucify him! Crucify him!”
MANY: Pilate said: “I am innocent of his blood.”
One: The soldiers said mockingly: “Hail, King of the Jews!”
MANY: The centurion said: “surely he was the Son of God!”
One: Joseph of Arimathea said: “Pilate, give me Jesus’ body so that I can bury it.”
MANY: As Good Friday ended, everyone was silent.
One: On Sunday, God broke the silence by saying all that needed to be said:
MANY: “Don’t be afraid. I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He isn’t here, because he’s been raised from the dead!”
Call to Easter Confession
One: Easter is a day to celebrate a mystery…a mystery that in Christ love has won and each of us has been saved. If we are honest, we will admit that this mystery is hard to understand…hard to comprehend…hard to believe. Entering into the mystery…and with a faith seeking understanding…let us confess together in words and in silence. Please join me as printed in your bulletins
Easter Confession (unison) – Mark 9:24
I believe…help my unbelief… (Moment of Silent Reflection)
Assurance of Pardon
One: Easter is mystery, but so is God’s grace. Rejoice on this Easter morning, for all of us, forever, are forgiven in Jesus Christ. AMEN.
Risen Christ, on this celebration day it is good to remember…and to unforget:
to unforget the gift we have been given in creation;
to unforget the gifts you have given your people of liberation and freedom;
to unforget the life and ministry of Christ among us;
to unforget his triumphal entry into Jerusalem, and overturning the tables of the moneychangers. and his last supper with his followers in the upper room.
to unforget how, in spite of arrest and torture and crucifixion, God chose to love us all forever with an empty tomb.
and to unforget the gift of this table, which has been given to us as a place of remembrance, and thanksgiving, and healing.
And so, gathered and unforgetting, we pray: (prayer of consecration here)
© Rev. Kevin Goldenbogen, 2018