Christ yesterday and today,
the beginning and the end,
Alpha and Omega, all time belongs to him, and all ages;
to him be glory and power, through every age and for ever. Amen.
By his holy and glorious wounds may Christ our Lord guard and keep us. Amen.
The Easter Candle is processed around the Church (if only! Please use imagination)
Hymn : Jesus Christ is risen today
Our very own Kevin plays the tune
1 Jesus Christ is ris’n today, Alleluia!
our triumphant holy day, Alleluia!
who did once upon the cross Alleluia!
suffer to redeem our loss. Alleluia!
2 Hymns of praise then let us sing Alleluia!
unto Christ our heav’nly King, Alleluia!
who endured the cross and grave, Alleluia!
sinners to redeem and save. Alleluia!
3 But the pains which he endured, Alleluia!
our salvation have procured; Alleluia!
now above the sky he’s King, Alleluia!
where the angels ever sing. Alleluia!
4 Sing we to our God above Alleluia!
praise eternal as his love; Alleluia!
praise him, all ye heav’nly host, Alleluia!
Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Alleluia!
Source: Trinity Psalter Hymnal #363
The Lighting of the Easter Candle:
This is the day when our Lord Jesus Christ was raised from the dead, crushing the power of sin and destroying the sting of death. Throughout the world Christians celebrate the awesome power of God as Christ calls us out of darkness to share in his marvellous light. May we, and all Christ’s people, shine as lights in the world to the glory of God the Father.
May the light of Christ, rising in glory, banish all darkness from our hearts and minds.
The Light of Christ: Thanks be to God.
The acclamation is repeated as the Easter Candle is processed to the Easter Garden.
At the Easter Garden
The Light of Christ: Thanks be to God.
Alleluia. Christ is risen. He is risen indeed. Alleluia.
The angel said to the women, ‘Do not be afraid; I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has been raised, as he said.’
( the stone is moved and a candle lit)
The Easter Candle is placed in its stand. All other candles are now lit .
Prayers of Penitence
(kneel or sit)
Jesus Christ, risen Master and triumphant Lord, we come to you in sorrow for our sins, and to confess to you our weakness and unbelief.
Like Mary at the empty tomb we fail to grasp the wonder of your presence.
Like the disciples behind closed doors, we are afraid to be seen as your followers.
Christ, have mercy. Christ have mercy.
Like Thomas in the upper room, we are slow to believe.
Lord, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.
May the God of love and power forgive you and free you from your sins, heal and strengthen you by his Spirit,
and raise you to new life in Christ our Lord. Amen
Alleluia Christ is risen! He is risen indeed. Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia.
The Easter Day Collect
Lord of all life and power,
who through the mighty resurrection of your Son
overcame the old order of sin and death
to make all things new in him:
grant that we, being dead to sin
and alive to you in Jesus Christ,
may reign with him in glory;
to whom with you and the Holy Spirit
be praise and honour, glory and might,
now and in all eternity. Amen
The Word of God
Kate reads from the New International Version
(The text is New Revised Standard Version
Peter began to speak to those assembled in the house of Cornelius. ‘I truly understand that God shows no partiality, but in every nation anyone who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him. You know the message he sent to the people of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ – he is Lord of all.
That message spread throughout Judea, beginning in Galilee after the baptism that John announced: how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power; how he went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him. We are witnesses to all that he did both in Judea and in Jerusalem. They put him to death by hanging him on a tree; but God raised him on the third day and allowed him to appear, not to all the people, but to us who were chosen by God as witnesses, and who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead.
He commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one ordained by God as judge of the living and the dead. All the prophets testify about him that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.’
Gospel Hymn If Christ Had Not Been Raised
1 If Christ had not been raised from death
our faith would be in vain,
our preaching but a waste of breath,
our sin and guilt remain.
But now the Lord is risen indeed;
he rules in earth and heaven:
his Gospel meets a world of need
in Christ we are forgiven.
2 If Christ still lay within the tomb
then death would be the end,
and we should face our final doom
with neither guide nor friend.
But now the Saviour is raised up,
so when a Christian dies
we mourn, yet look to God in hope
in Christ the saints arise!
3 If Christ had not been truly raised
his church would live a lie;
his name should never more be praised,
his words deserve to die.
But now our great Redeemer lives;
through him we are restored;
his word endures, his church revives
in Christ, our risen Lord.
Christopher Idle from 1 Corinthians 15: 12-20
© Christopher Idle/Jubilate Hymns Ltd
A Reading from the Gospel:
Jesus Christ is risen from the dead. Alleluia.
He has defeated the powers of death. Alleluia.
He has the words of eternal life. Alleluia.
Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to John 20.1–18, read by Sylvia
Glory to you, O Lord
Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, ‘They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.’
Then Peter and the other disciple set out and went towards the tomb. The two were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. He bent down to look in and saw the linen wrappings lying there, but he did not go in.
Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen wrappings lying there, and the cloth that had been on Jesus’ head, not lying with the linen wrappings but rolled up in a place by itself.
Then the other disciple, who reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; for as yet they did not understand the scripture, that he must rise from the dead. Then the disciples returned to their homes.
But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb; and she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had been lying, one at the head and the other at the feet.
They said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping?’ She said to them, ‘They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.’
When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping? For whom are you looking?’
Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, ‘Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.’
Jesus said to her, ‘Mary!’
She turned and said to him in Hebrew, ‘Rabbouni!’ which means Teacher.
Jesus said to her, ‘Do not hold on to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and say to them, “I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.”’
Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, ‘I have seen the Lord’ and she told them that he had said these things to her.
This is the Gospel of the Lord. Praise to you, O Christ.
Homily by Reverend Jane Wheatley
I began this Homily after I had celebrated the Eucharist in my home alone last Sunday as suggested by the Bishops. Then it was Palm Sunday. I read to myself, out loud, The Litany of Palms. The Gospel story of Jesus’ journey to Jerusalem. “Meek and riding on an ass” as predicted by Isaiah and retold in St Matthew as it had happened.
I held this Eucharist for the world and all God’s creation as followed by the Church of England’s Lent Study book.
But as I celebrated, I had a curious feeling there was another presence in the room. I bet you think I’m going to say it was God (I’m sure He was there too) but it was Ellie my cat. She turned up and sat beside me as I stood at the table, (makeshift altar). She doesn’t usually do that. Normally she would be ON the table, moving all objects to the floor. She sat still for half an hour.
This week, Easter Day, I hope she comes again, as this will happen each Sunday at 10am, until our churches are open again.
I think that Easter Day will mean much more to us than perhaps in former times. We have temporally lost our church building. We have to find God in other ways than together on Sundays. We have to seek Him in ourselves and our own four walls. We can do this because we have had a go over the past few weeks. Also, we can do this because we have the presence of the Risen Christ who is not confined to the walls of a tomb.
In the Gospel story, the women went to the place of burial where they thought they might find Him. HE WASN’T THERE!! He had risen and He IS risen. He is alive and I know and feel that so strongly today. I hope you do too.
As we have travelled from Palm Sunday, through Holy Week to Easter Day, we have seen the fulfilment of Scripture and Prophecy. We have seen what humanity can do to destroy faith. We have seen how God can be ridiculed, tested with attempts to kill Him. But to no avail.
That is our God! Risen, Ascended, Glorified.
On a slightly different note, the CEO of Sainsbury has written to all his customers, lifting the restrictions of two Easter eggs per person as he understands that we wish to send them to loved ones. I hope he realises the symbolism of the sealed egg (the sealed tomb). that has to be smashed, to access the goodies inside!
This Easter, smash an Easter Egg. Find the joy inside. For Christ is risen from His tomb. So we are free, loved, forgiven and safe. May He be with us all, our families, friends and those in our prayers at this time.
God bless you all. Pray for each other, the Government, the NHS and STAY SAFE.
Alleluia Christ is Risen – He is Risen indeed – Alleluia. Amen
Prayers led by Shena
Today we rejoice; we give thanks; we worship God – the giver of life. Today we remember that day 2000 years ago, which transformed the course of history, and which across centuries, has transformed countless lives.
Easter Day – the day on which evil, sorrow and suffering……even death itself, were finally defeated; a day that makes every day, and every moment……a new beginning.
You who read this prayer, enter now as best you can, into the experience of those who witnessed the empty tomb and the risen Christ. The message they heard – the Good News – was not just for them…..it was for US….and for ALL!
Lord, in this Easter season you bring the assurance that NOTHING can overcome your love. You confronted the forces of evil and everything they could muster against you. And when they had done their worst, you emerged victorious.
NO power able to hold you down!
Teach us Lord, ALWAYS to hold on to that truth, and to live each moment in the knowledge that – whatever we may face – your love will see us through.
Father God, we live in perilous times with the corona virus affecting all countries, and all peoples across the world. So many families suffering the debility of the illness, and so many others suffering the loss of their loved ones. We pray for all whose lives have been changed by this virus. And we pray for our Prime Minister that he may fully recover – thinking also of his family and loved ones in their anxiety.
We give thanks for the army of NHS staff; the carers; the shopworkers ; the postal workers and so many others including the invisible body of people who keep our utilities working. All of these dedicated people are working for US, working to keep our country going, until the fight against this disease is won.
We give enormous thanks to them all, and pray that they be given the strength and energy to keep themselves well.
And finally Lord, on this Easter Day, this new beginning, we thank you that you meet with us day by day. We thank you that you turn our weakness into strength, our fear into confidence, and our doubt into faith. We praise you that for each one of us there is ALWAYS the assurance of a new beginning.
In the name of the risen Christ, we pray. Amen
Hymn: Jesus Prince and Saviour
Jesus, prince and saviour,
Lord of life who died,
Christ, the friend of sinners,
mocked and crucified;
for a world’s salvation
he his body gave,
lay at last death’s victim,
lifeless in the grave.
Lord of life triumphant,
risen now to reign!
King of endless ages,
Jesus lives again!
- In his power and Godhead
every victory won,
pain and passion ended,
all his purpose done:
Christ the Lord is risen:
sighs and sorrows past,
death’s dark night is over,
morning comes at last!
- Resurrection morning,
sinners’ bondage freed!
Christ the Lord is risen,
he is risen indeed!
Jesus, Prince and Saviour,
Lord of life who died,
Christ the King of glory
now is glorified!
Copyright Timothy Dudley-Smith
Sadly, we cannot celebrate communion in this time of lockdown, so you might like to use this prayer
Thanks be to thee, my Lord Jesus Christ,
for all the benefits thou hast won for me,
for all the pain and insults thou hast borne for me.
Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally,
I ask you to come spiritually into my heart
O most merciful Redeemer, Friend and Brother,
may I know thee more clearly,
love thee more dearly,
and follow thee more nearly,
day by day. Amen
It is from a page on the Church of England website. Look under Guidance during Corona virus.
And/or watch a service online, as advised here https://www.stalbans.anglican.org/faith/living-gods-love-at-all-times/#Holy
The Blessing of the Easter Tree
Sadly, we haven’t been able to make an Easter Tree this year, so, can you remember when we did? We will again!
A Thought for the Way
May the risen Christ give you his eternal Blessings of:
Joy – because he has triumphed over death.
Peace- because he has forgiven our sins.
Purpose- for he walks with us.
Hope- because he will come again.
Love– because his presence fills our hearts.
And questions– as we await God’s will for us. Amen
Alleluia. Christ is risen. He is risen indeed. Alleluia!
God the Son, who in bursting from the grave has won a glorious victory, give you joy as you share the Easter faith. Amen. +
Final Hymn: Thine be the glory
Thine be the glory,
Risen, conqu’ring Son;
Endless is the victory,
Thou o’er death hast won;
Angels in bright raiment
Rolled the stone away,
Kept the folded grave clothes
Where Thy body lay.
Thine be the glory,
Risen conquering Son,
Endless is the victory,
Thou o’er death hast won.
Lo! Jesus meets us,
Risen from the tomb;
Lovingly He greets us,
Scatters fear and gloom;
Let the church with gladness,
Hymns of triumph sing;
For her Lord now liveth,
Death hath lost its sting.
No more we doubt Thee,
Glorious Prince of life;
Life is naught without Thee;
Aid us in our strife;
Make us more than conquerors,
Through Thy deathless love:
Bring us safe through Jordan
To Thy home above.
Georg Frideric Handel
With the risen Christ within you, go in the peace of Christ. Alleluia, alleluia.
Thanks be to God. Alleluia, alleluia.
Young people are invited to join in the Easter Egg Hunt (if only!)
Please keep up your planned giving because we need to maintain our cashflow. Offertory envelopes can be dropped in to Sylvia, Shena or Peter but we are trying to avoid handling cash if possible. Could you consider giving by occasional cheque, or setting up a standing order or direct debit? The church and Wilbury Hall hires have ceased, so that income stream is gone! If you could spare a bit more, that would be great!
In current circumstances, the Foodbank is preferring to give vouchers to its clients to spend in supermarkets, but it needs money to finance these vouchers, so please give money
If you can give food, donations are very welcome. Please leave at the shop where you bought it
The items listed are the most urgently needed.
UHT Milk [Longlife] Dried Milk
Sponge Puddings Tinned Rice/Custard Tinned Meat
More general help
You could give online to nationalemergenciestrust.org.uk, who have launched an appeal for all those affected financially by the Coronavirus
Prayers for the week
Redhoods Way West
Runnalow & its closes
Special topics:- Our community halls and their activities,
Councillors and local authorities