Dear Veradale Friends and Members,
Remember, we will be outside in front of our church for Easter Sunrise. You can join us in person or on Zoom and Facebook.
Easter Sunrise Worship Service
April 4,2021 6:15 am
Gathered around the fire, we remember the fire
near which Peter denied Jesus three times.
Pastor: Grace to you from Jesus Christ, who was, and is, and is to come. Sisters and brothers in Christ, on this most holy morning when we proclaim the passage of Jesus Christ from death to life, we offer up our songs and prayers as a new dawn breaks. Through light and the word, we recall Christ’s death and resurrection, we share Christ’s triumph.
Hear these words:
“Death is swallowed up in victory.
O death, where is your victory?
O death, where is your sting?”
1 Corinthians 15:54-55
Hymn: “I Woke Up This Morning ” sung a cappella
I woke up this mo’nin, With my mind, stayin’ on Jesus
(Repeat 2x more) Halleluh, halleleluh, halleleluh
I’m singin’ an prayin’ with my,Stayin’ on, Jesus
(Repeat 2x more)Halleluh, halleleluh, halleleluh
Responsive reading based on Psalm 93
One: You who dwell in the shelter of the Most High who abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
All: We will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress,
my God, in whom I trust.”
One: God will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence.
ALL: God will cover us with God’s feathers, and under God’s wings we will find refuge; God’s faithfulness will be our shield and rampart.
One: You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day,
ALL: Let us make the Most High our dwelling— even the Lord, who is our refuge-
One: For God will command the angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways;
ALL: We will call upon God, and God will answer God will be with us in trouble, God will deliver us.
Prayer of Invocation
Powerful and loving God, you have raised Jesus Christ from the dead. God, raise us too. May fresh life burst among us like buds awakening to the spring. May shells of distrust and self-hatred that keep us from loving, be broken away so that new life can emerge. May new community spring up where fear has kept us from the stranger. Keep us patient in making peace and building justice. Teach us to trust the slow process from seed to stem, from stem to flower, from flower to fruit. Breathe on us with your Spirit, through the risen Christ. Amen
Hymn: “In the Bulb there is a Flower” sung a cappella
Words and Music: Natalie A. Sleeth
1. In the bulb there is a flower; in the seed, an apple tree; In cocoons, a hidden promise: butterflies will soon be free! In the cold and snow of winter there’s a spring that waits to be, unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.
2. There’s a song in every silence, seeking word and melody; There’s a dawn in every darkness, bringing hope to you and me. From the past will come the future; what it holds, a mystery, Unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.
3. In our end is our beginning; in our time, infinity; In our doubt there is believing; in our life, eternity, In our death, a resurrection; at the last, a victory, unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.
Blessing of a New Flame
(flame taken from fire)
One: Let us pray.
All: Eternal God, giver of light and life, bless this new flame, that by its radiance and warmth we may respond to your love and grace, and be set free from all that separates us from you and from each other; through Jesus Christ, the sun of righteousness. Amen.
Lighting of the Paschal Candle
(Christ Candle is lit with flame from the fire)
ALL: May the light of Christ, rising in glory,
illumine our hearts and minds.
Lighting of Memorial Candles
(At this time, all are invited to come forward and light a candle and speak the name(s) of those who have died from this life to be born into the next. You might also light a candle for the death of former ways or beliefs that have died from your own life giving you a new perspective and direction).
Listening for God
One: Dear brothers and sisters in Christ: We have begun our morning vigil. As we watch and wait, let us listen to the word of God, recalling God’s saving acts throughout history and how, in the fullness of time, God’s Word became flesh and dwelt among us.
Jesus Christ, our Redeemer!
All: We do not live by bread alone. Let the Word of God fill us as we hear the reading of the scripture.
John 20: 1-18 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
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 toward 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? Whom are you looking for?” 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.
Sharing of Thoughts, Poems, and Insights
One: Gracious, living God, we come before you with open hearts. On this Easter morning we are thankful for life and for the victory of life over death. We are mindful of those who have left this life and we are mindful of how our lives have changed in this past year. Parts of ourselves have died away. Keep your promise of new life. Restore us and hear us as we offer you the prayers from our hearts.
(Anyone who would like to voice a prayer is welcome to do so now.)
First Raising of the Paschal Candle
(A person carries the Paschal Candle into the narthex and all follow.)
The one carrying the candle raises it and says: “Christ our Light.”
All: Thanks be to God.
Second Raising of the Paschal Candle
(All enter the sanctuary)
One raises the candle and says: “Christ our Light.”
All: Thanks be to God.
Third Raising of the Paschal Candle
(All enter the chancel)
One raises the candle and says: “Christ our Light.”
All: Thanks be to God.
(The candle set in its place)
One: Rejoice, heavenly powers! Sing choirs of angels!
Jesus Christ, our Light is risen! Sound the trumpet of salvation!
All: Rejoice, O Earth, in shining splendor,
radiant in the brightness of your Sovereign!
Christ has conquered! Glory fills you! Night vanishes forever!
One: Rejoice, O servant church! Exult in glory! The risen Savior shines upon you! Let this place resound with joy, echoing the mighty song of all God’s people!
My dearest friends, standing with me in this holy light, join me in asking for God’s loving presence to be ever among us.
All: With full hearts, minds, and voices we praise the unseen God, the Eternal Creator, and your only begotten one, Jesus the Christ.
One: For Christ has claimed us as God’s own. This is the morning when Christians everywhere celebrate how God’s great love overcomes even the worst of this world. This is the morning when Jesus Christ broke the chains of death and rose triumphant from the grave.
All: O God, how wonderful your care for us! How boundless your merciful love!The power of this blessed morning dispels all evil, washes guilt away, restores lost innocence, brings mourners joy; it casts out hatred, brings peace, and humbles earthly pride. Morning is truly blessed when heaven is wedded to earth
and humanity is reconciled with God!
One: Therefore, gracious Creator, in the joy of this morning, receive our praise. May this Easter candle be a pillar of fire that glows to your honor, O God.
All: Let it mingle with the lights of heaven and let the light in our hearts continue bravely burning to dispel the shadows! May the morning star that never sets find our flames still burning. In Christ, that morning star who came back from the dead, shed your peaceful light on all creation, and who lives and reigns for ever. Amen.
Hymn “Christ the Lord is Risen Today” sung a cappella
1. Christ the Lord, is risen today, Alleluia!
Mortal tongues and angels say, Alleluia!
Raise your joys and triumphs high, Alleluia!
Sing, glad heavens, and earth, reply, Alleluia!
2. Let the Victor’s people sing, Alleluia!
Where, O death, is now your sting? Alleluia!
Dying once, Christ lives to save, Alleluia!
Where your victory, O grave? Alleluia!
3. Love’s redeeming work is done, Alleluia!
Fought the fight, the battle won, Alleluia!
Death in vain forbids Christ rise, Alleluia!
God has opened paradise, Alleluia!
4. Soar we now where Christ has led, Alleluia!
Following our exalted Head, Alleluia!
Made like Christ, like Christ we rise, Alleluia!
Ours the cross, the grave, the skies, Alleluia!
Christ is Risen!
We seek Him no more at the tomb. Creation is made new!
We open our hearts to growth and joy. Christ is with us!
We go out into lives transformed by God’s love. Christ is risen indeed!