Monday 9 April 2012

Alleluia! Christ is Risen!

The first light 2012 in Dunoon woomphs up: courtesy of goforchris on Flickr

That's the traditional cry in churches up and down the land as Easter Day finally arrives - with the response: 'He is risen indeed, Alleluia!' echoing back.

It's been a good Holy Week and Easter in the linked charges of Cowal and Bute. It's a week of hard work, lots of services, lots of themes and different encounters. Some churches (as I follow them on Twitter or 'like' them on Facebook) have a greater degree of formality. Latin phrases abound as the days of the week, wrapped in unreformed tradition, are played out. Devotional artwork is splashed all over the web, and in church buildings.

The usual slightly competitive edge also seems to appear when clergy blog or tweet or status update about these things. It may just be a desire to articulate that things have gone well (or otherwise) that makes people talk about numbers at services, or running out of hymn books, or all the rest of it. But it is not, in my humble opinion, very healthy to splash the pages of the service register for public display on the web.

Does that mean, Mr Swift (I imagine you say) that your Holy Week and Easter was a poor one? There you go - the desire to prove that we are doing a good job, it is growing, all is well - it can even dart out in the middle of a blog post about it actually being about our Lord and Him being risen!

My statistics I choose to share for this Holy Week and Easter:

Number of candle drip screens gone up in flames in services: 2

Number of tins of petrol consumed for 'first light': 1

Number of ecumenical services I nearly nodded off in: all of them (including my own ones)

Number of shoreline weddings: 1

Number of hours spent worrying about doctrinaire colleagues disapproving of shoreline wedding in Holy Week: 0

Number of business miles driven: 279

Number of business ferry rides: 10

(OK, those last two might be a little bit competitive, but I am a mere human!)

Number of last suppers, crucifixions, lights lit, alleluias shouted and empty tombs fled away from: the right number.

Alleluia! Christ is Risen!

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