This was the first year we tried a sunrise service, and at first we thought it might draw only 25 people .We decide to go ahead anyway, and as we planed, more and more people got interest.When Easter morning finally arrived, we must have had about 80 people there, including some community people who had been contacted through our Coffebreak and Men's Life programs.
We started the outdoor service at 5:45 A.M.in the breezeway between our parish hall and our church building.We wanted this service to be different from the regular morning worship and felt taht praise would have dominate. So we chose appropiate music.
Since the service was so early, we didn't want a noisy beginning, but we still wanted the joy of Easter reflected in our music. The service began with a harp prelude, followed by a combination of other instruments at various points in the service to enhance our thoughts of joy and victory over death. The four trumpets played only a brief postlude,providing a triumphant conclusion to the service as the congregation moved into the parish hall for breakfast.
Members of the worship committee read the Scipture passages, and I gave a short message on 1 Peter 1:8-9. We kept this part of the service brief because we expected most of these people to return for the two regular services later-and they did!
That sunday people commented that their hearts were burning as we enjoyed true communion with our risen Lord. I have little doubt that we will plan another Easter Sunrise service next year.
Pastor of Trinity CRC, Artesia, California
This service on the following page was prepared by members of the Trinity CRC, Artesia, California.
All hymns in the service were selected from the Psalter Hymnal.
Easter Sunrise Service
Prelude: Easter Music for the Harp
Introit: "Arise, Shine, for Your Light Has Come" (PH 198)
OUR WORSHIP BEGINS
Christ died for our sins
according to the Scriptures.
He was buried, and he was raised on the third day
according to the Scriptures.
Grace and peace to you from him who is, and who was, and who is to come, and from the seven spirits before his throne, and
from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth.
Hymn of Adoration: "This is the Day" (PH 241:1-2)
WE CELEBRATE THE LORD'S VICTORY
The Resurrection Hope
Scripture: Psalm 16:9-11
Response: "In the Presence of Your People" (PH 160)
Scripture: Job 19:23-27
Anthem: "I Know That My Redeemer Lives" (Handel, The Messiah)
Scripture: Mark 8:31; 9:9-10; 10:32-34
Hymn: "As Moses Raised the Serpent Up" (PH 219:1-2)
The Resurrection Event
Scripture: Matthew 28:1-10
Hymn: "A Shout Rings Out, A Joyful Voice" (PH 392)
Scripture: Mark 16:4-7
Hymn: "Come You Faithful, Raise the Strain" (PH 389)
Hymn: "Christ Is Alive! Let Christians Sing" (PH 413:1-2)
The Resurrection Life and Significance
Scripture: 1 Corinthians 15:20,50-57
Anthem: "O Death Where Is Thy Victory?" (Handel, The Messiah)
Scripture: 1 Peter 1:3-9
Hymn: "I Will Sing unto the Lord" (PH 152)
Message: Inexpressible and Glorious Joy (1 Pet. 1:8)
WE ARE DISMISSED WITH JOY
Hymn: 271 "We Know That Christ Is Raised" (PH 271 to the tune of 505, SINE NOMINE)
Christ is risen!
He is risen indeed!
To him be glory both now and forever (2 Pet. 3:18).
Postlude: Trumpet Fanfare with "The Strife Is O'er, The Battle Done" -Palestrina