This Month's Message











My Life is my Message." Mahatma Gandhi

Revd. Jane Holmes
Team Rector




APRIL 2018

Chocolate Eggs and Bunnies

As I write this Easter is approaching fast and I have been thinking about the talks I will give to schools and in family services with children present this Easter.  I lead regular assemblies in our schools throughout the year and am aware that some are more ‘successful’ than others but hope that these occasions are a source of something useful for everyone.

I was reminded of a particular assembly a vicar friend told me about which they delivered some years ago.  It was actually a Christmas assembly but I think there is a parallel which makes it relevant to our Easter reflections.

The assembly was based around a Christmas cracker.  Children were encouraged to share ideas about why the cracker was fun.  Two children were then asked to pull a cracker, which they did with glee. They immediately discarded the paper wrapper and decorations (picked up off the floor up by a teacher and kept safe) whilst they explored the contents of the inner cardboard tube with great anticipation.

Finally the toy inside was found and exclaimed over.

The children were then told to go and put the toy in the bin and were given the torn outer wrapping of the cracker to keep.

All were of course very puzzled.  The groans and moans reverberating from the children around the school hall gave testimony to this!

Throwing away the treasure from inside but keeping the outside wrapping and frills – how odd!

The point of the whole thing is, of course, that that is what we do so often with Christmas.  We hold on to the decoration, the superficial – and we lose the central message of the season – the birth of God’s Son, Jesus Christ, come to live among us.

I think this is even more the case with the Christian festival of Easter.

For so many, Easter is about chocolate eggs, and maybe a bunny or two when in fact the heart, the very centre of Easter, is the fact that Christ died for us and rose again.

Easter isn’t really about chocolate eggs, or bunnies.  The reason we have these associations is because they provide images of new life and that image is tightly bound up with the theology of Easter. 

At a simple level we could associate new life with the resurrection of Jesus on that first Easter Sunday and this is probably where the images come from.  But for Christians, the real message of new life associated with Easter is that through what Jesus did for us on the cross we have the opportunity for new life with Him, with God, starting now and lasting on into eternity.  ‘I am the resurrection and the life’ said Jesus.  He shows us that death is not the end, and so changes life.

Now that’s worth celebrating!  So don’t throw away the treasure inside the story this Easter.

Much love and happy holidays

Revd Jane

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