Easter

This Easter worship service centers around the theme of celebration through festive music, the retelling of the resurrection story from the gospels, communion that focuses on hope and victory, and a commission to serve with joy. Worship leaders may choose from several musical selections and arrangements.

Celebrate As We Gather

Song: “A Resurrection Declaration” with choir, brass, and bells Roger Thornhill and Victor C. Johnson

Scene 1

[If desired, you could have an individual or small group humming “Were You There?” underneath the monologue until the phrase “Lazarus! Come out!”]

Please step back with me to the first Easter morning. [head scarf on]

In this drama, loosely based on Matthew 27:55-61 and 28:1-10, Mary Magdalene (MM) and “the other Mary” reflect on their time with Jesus and the events of Easter morning.
While the details of these two women’s lives are unclear, what isn’t disputed is the fact that they traveled with Jesus and the disciples and played a significant role in the resurrection narrative and message.

A Love Stronger Than Death

Celebrating Easter with Anthems and Texts from the Song of Songs

Celebrating Easter with the Song of Songs may seem to be an unlikely pairing at first. But since we proclaim Christ as the consummate lover of the collective church and the individual soul, what could be more natural?

A Season of "Social Capital"

Seven Easter Services around Seven Tables in Luke and Acts

Have you ever dined with a Muslim? Or with a person from South Africa? Ever shared a meal with a homeless person or with the mayor of the town or city where you live? The answers to these deceptively simple questions communicate more about our “social capital” than we might at first expect.

In recent years the term “social capital” has become a buzz phrase with many different definitions. Most of these definitions refer to human relationships within society and distinguish between three different kinds of social capital: bonding, bridging, and linking.

Easter Sunday is usually the day churches are as full as they ever get. So it’s a great opportunity to express the good news of Christ’s resurrection in a powerful way. This dramatic Easter presentation has a strong scriptural foundation and it engages worshipers in a creative, participatory manner. You can and should adapt it to suit your sanctuary and congregation, using, for example, more or fewer volunteers or different symbols. We’ve used this format both as a sunrise/Sonrise service and at the regular worship hour.

This sunrise service began with contemplative instrumental music. Because the service was held indoors, a picture of a sunrise was projected on the screen before the service and during each of the prayer/reading segments. Parts for Reader 1 were adapted from an Easter prayer titled “Lord God, Early in the Morning,” from Stages on the Way by John L. Bell and Wild Goose Worship Group © 2000, GIA Publications, Inc. p. 184)

Call to Worship: “Come into His Presence” CH 420, SNC 3, SFL 4, WR 119