This was our third year having a donkey in worship on Palm Sunday. The first year, I had a few raised eyebrows but now as a congregation, you have fully embraced the donkey. I loved seeing you have your pictures taken with “Cisco” as we launched Holy Week with the palms and processions. It was a wonderful Sunday – with a record number of children in our kid’s program and Easter Egg Hunt after services. It was an electric Sunday. That was the mood in Jerusalem when Jesus rode in on a donkey that first Palm Sunday. Lots of people. All celebrating Jesus coming into the city.
Now, we keep walking with Jesus towards the cross. Yesterday, at Maundy Thursday services, we sat with Jesus and the disciples in the upper room, where he gave them the command that he would show for them as the week unfolded: Love one another. We had communion and then kept walking to the cross. The light grew dimmer until Jesus laid down his life for us and took his final breath. What a powerful service – special thanks to our choir for the way they are leading us this holy week.
I hope you will find some moments today and tomorrow to remember what Jesus did for you when he gave his life.
Thankfully, Sunday is coming. The day we’ve been waiting for will finally be here. On Easter, we celebrate the resurrection. Jesus died on the cross on Friday. His heart stopped. And on the third day, he rose from the dead. The resurrection is hard to believe. It always has been. A recent survey taken in England, showed that of a sample of 2000 self-professing Christians, 23% didn’t believe in the Resurrection. Is resurrection optional for Christians?
Though hard to believe, it is not optional. It is essential. The resurrection is the cornerstone of our faith. With the resurrection, everything is different. Without it, the cross is a tragedy with no meaning. Without it, we have no future hope.
As Paul says no poignantly in 1 Corinthians 15:
If Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. … If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins.
On Sunday, we will be looking at the resurrection through the eyes of the disciples. None of them expected it. My sermon is “This Changes Everything.” Jesus coming back from the dead changed Mary and John and Peter 2000 years ago and it has been changing people ever since.
Our Easter services at BECA will be at:
8 and 9:15 am – Classic Services with brass and our Chancel Choir
10:30 am – Modern Service with our modern band.
There will be a special gift for each person attending.
We will be expecting big crowds and need your help welcoming them. I can’t wait for people to have the GRACE experience. You are such a warm and inviting congregation. See the P.S. for more details to make your Sunday the best possible experience.
Please invite your friends and come expectantly – for all that God will do as we celebrate the resurrection of His Son and our Savior, Jesus!
With Easter Expectations,
Dr. Marnie Crumpler, Senior Pastor
P.S. Below are reminders about the details of the day.
PARKING – In addition to our BECA lots, and street parking, we will have an off-campus satellite parking location (Memorial Pool /Municipal Ice Skating Parking Lot) off of Illick’s Mill road. Shuttle buses will run from 7 am – 1 pm. Give yourself some extra time if you are planning to use the off-campus shuttle. You will be dropped off at the front door of BECAHI. If you are able, please join the staff in parking at this lot.
CONSIDER THE 8 am SERVICE — The parking will be less challenging and choosing this service will make more room for guests at our second classic service. Both the 8 and 9:15 am services are identical.
FLOWER CROSS – we will have our flower cross in front of BECA. Please bring flowers and plan to take your family pictures in front of the cross.
CHILDREN’S PROGRAM – nursery and preschool classes will be available at all three services. Elementary aged kids will begin in the worship service with their parents and be dismissed for a very special EASTER program designed especially for them at the 9:15 and 10:30 services.
HOSPITALITY – a special thanks to all of the extra greeters and ushers for being on the front lines of welcoming our guests for Easter services. We are all a big hospitality team on Easter (and every week). Due to parking demands and people and car traffic, we will not have our normal coffee time on Easter. Thank you for understanding and making Easter about welcoming our guests and inviting them to join us again.
Dr. Marnie Crumpler