Easter

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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.
– John 20:18 (NRSV)


Scripture Readings for Easter Sunday (April 15)

Photo Credit: © Beth A. Richardson. Dogwood bloom outside The Upper Room.

Holy Saturday

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They took the body of Jesus and wrapped it with the spices in linen cloths, according to the burial custom of the Jews. … And so, because it was the Jewish day of Preparation, and the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.
– John 19:40, 42 (NRSV)


Scripture Readings for Holy Saturday (April 14)

Photo Credit: Photo © Beth A. Richardson. The Pietà by Michelangelo housed in St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican City.

Premier of “Requiem of Remembrance”

Some of you remember the prayer I wrote called “Some Days Are Very Hard.” I wrote it after a Facebook friend posted a response to one of Jack’s funny posts. She said that she appreciated Jack’s humor because “some days are very hard.” That phrase worked on me until it became the prayer that I wrote and which was included in my book.

I shared that prayer with a choir from Los Altos United Methodist Church in Los Altos, California. At the end of the retreat, T. Paul Rosas, the senior organist for the church, asked if he could use the words in a requiem that he was writing to commemorate the lives of family and friends.

He has completed the first segment of the requiem and it will premier tonight at the church’s Maundy Thursday service at 7:30 PDT.

[Update: 9:20 a.m.] [Update #2 — corrected times: 1:45 p.m.] The service will be live streamed from the church’s website. Tune in at 10:30 pm ET, 9:30 CT, and 8:30 MT 7:30 pm Pacific time. But even if you cannot watch, think and pray about the events of this day and of the premier of this beautiful musical piece “”#4 Dies Irae (Some Days Are Very Hard) by T. Paul Rosas. Thank you, Paul and Los Altos United Methodist Church. I’m deeply honored.

Here’s a video of the prayer that I recorded at Iona last year.

Good Friday

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Surely he has borne our infirmities and carried our diseases; yet we accounted him stricken, struck down by God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the punishment that made us whole, and by his bruises we are healed.
– Isaiah 53:4-5 (NRSV)


Scripture Readings for Good Friday (April 13)

Photo Credit: © Beth A. Richardson. On the wall near the cemetery in Vernazza, Italy.

Maundy Thursday

soulfeastcommunion600Eat and drink … and remember.

When Jesus had given thanks, he broke [the bread] and said, “This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way he took the cup also, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
– 1 Corinthians 11:24-26 (NRSV)


Scripture Readings for Maundy Thursday (April 13)

Photo Credit: © Beth A. Richardson.

Wednesday of Holy Week

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the sake of the joy that was set before him endured the cross, disregarding its shame, and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such hostility against himself from sinners, so that you may not grow weary or lose heart.
– Hebrews 12:1-3 (NRSV)


Scriptures for Wednesday of Holy Week (April 12)

Photo Credit: © Beth A. Richardson.

Tuesday of Holy Week

Listen to me, O coastlands, pay attention, you peoples from far away! The LORD called me before I was born, while I was in my mother’s womb he named me.
– Isaiah 49:1 (NRSV)


Scriptures for Tuesday of Holy Week (April 11)

Photo Credit: © Beth A. Richardson. Scottish islands.