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    April 17, 2019

    Crowds of Parisians gathered outside the Notre Dame Cathedral and sang Ave Maria as it was burning on Monday. This makes perfect sense to me. It is a landmark in their neighbourhood. It is a physical connection to their sense of place in the world. For many it may well have been their local church where they worshipped. It wasn’t that they were architects lamenting the loss of unique flying buttresses. They were neighbours coming together to care for one another and comfort one another while something precious to them was threatened.

    Many times we’ve heard people say that the church is not a building, it’s the people. It’s sad that sometimes the concern for bricks and mortar overshadows the sense of ministry and interconnectedness in some congregations. Church is people. But God’s people need a place to gather together. And over time those gathering places are imbued with shared memories, and ministries, with baptisms and funerals and weddings, with sermons and anthems and prayers and hymns, and along the way more than a little spiritual residue accrues!

    Notre Dame Cathedral has a centuries long history of building up such residue. Faith United has only been around for 22 years and we’d be gutted if it was damaged like the cathedral was. And yet despite that heartbreak, after a time we’d find a way to go forward, because as important as the building is the people and the ministry are more so. We’d be devastated by the loss, and we’d find a new way to be God’s people in this time and place.

    Those folks singing Ave Maria are the same. Thankfully, the reports are saying that there was not as much damage as could have occurred. Apparently, all the relics and important art works, and all the magnificent stained glass windows have been saved. And already there are reports of hundreds of millions of dollars being pledged to rebuild the damaged cathedral. One day it is on fire and there is hopelessness, fear, and lament. And shortly thereafter the promise of resurrection is enacted.

    Death and resurrection. The end of what was and the beginning of what will be. It’s a rhythm that is fundamental to our human experience.
    I invite you to reflect on your own losses and resurrections as you ponder the rhythms of Holy Week.

    Holy Week Worship

    Maundy Thursday (Potluck) ~ April 18th @ 6:00 pm
    Good Friday ~ April 19th @ 10:30 am
    Easter Sunrise (at Ebenezer UC) ~ April 21st @ 6:45 am
    Easter Sunday (Communion) ~ April 21st @ 10:30 am
    *(NO Sunday Night Worship on Easter Sunday)*

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