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Thought for the Week - w/b 7th April

# Church Without Walls

Published by Bimbola Adediran on Wednesday, 10 April 2024 08:37
Thought for the Week - w/b 7th April

                                                  Thought for the Week – the Easter Garden

 

This is a picture of the beautiful Easter Garden in St Albright’s church. 

                                                                  

Our churchwarden Steve Whitfield and his wife Beverley have made the Garden for many years and it is always a lovely way of picturing in our minds Jesus meeting Mary Magdalene outside the tomb, turning her sorrow to joy. This year, the Garden is extra special because Steve salvaged some of the materials which came down when the church roof was repaired, and incorporated them into the display. There are some roofing stones and tiles together with the nails which held them in place. As well as being a good way of reusing historic material from our ancient and beautiful church building, these objects remind us of some of the messages of Easter.

The psalm for Easter Sunday was number 118. It contains these verses:

     “ I thank you that you have answered me

         and have become my salvation.

      The stone that the builders rejected

         has become the chief cornerstone.” 

These words were recalled by the early Church as they sought to understand the meaning of the death and resurrection of Jesus. Peter, addressing the Jewish religious leaders, said that although they had had Jesus crucified by the Romans, God had raised Him from the dead. Jesus, he said, was

“the stone that was rejected by you; it has become the cornerstone”, concluding,

“there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among mortals by which we must be saved.”

So the refuse stones from our church building repairs remind us that the true cornerstone on which our faith is built is the crucified and risen Lord Jesus. The nails which you can see if you look carefully in the picture remind us of that crucifixion which preceded the resurrection; as former Archbishop Rowan Williams has said,

“There is no pre-cross Christianity.” Of the resurrection, he states,

“The resurrection displays the integrity, the indestructibility, of the love that has been at work all through. The resurrection is neither an optional extra nor a happy ending, it is the inescapable bursting through of the essential reality of who and what Jesus is.[1]”. 

May we all be inspired and filled with this resurrection power and joy.

[1] R Williams, God with Us, The meaning of the cross and resurrection, then and now. (SPCK 2017)

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