We walked with our Lord through His last days as we commemorated Holy Week ending with our joyous Easter Sunday celebration!
Fr. Scott led a beautiful Maundy Thursday service. He started his sermon by asking what we would do tonight if we knew we would die tomorrow. All of the Gospel writers record the events of his last night as Jesus faced that same situation. Jesus chose to transform the Passover celebration of God's deliverance of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt into the deliverance of man from sin and death through his body and blood. What a glorious and joyful event even in the midst of what Jesus knew was coming the next day! Jesus also taught the disciples humility - through the words and actions of washing their feet. This act of the Master washing the students feet broke all social norms of the time and modeled the proper mindset for future church leaders. Even though Jesus knew Judas was going to betray him, he still chose to love Judas by giving the sacraments and washing his feet. Lastly, Jesus gave his disciples a new mandate : "That ye love one another; as I have loved you". The world had never known such a commandment before. Fr. Scott asked us to imagine how the world would change if Christians lived up to this standard. Just as Christ's actions healed the relationship between God and man, our action following this commandment can heal the relationship between people.
Thank you Fr. Scott for the moving and beautiful sermon.
After the sermon, Fr. Scott humbly washed the feet of the members of the congregation. During this part of the service, Sue played beautiful, moving music.
After the service, Fr. Scott and the Altar Guild members stripped the altar, leaving only a small Altar of Repose for use in the Good Friday service.
Thank you Fr. Scott, Sue, Rose Marie, Teresa, Diane, and Carole for a beautiful and meaningful service.
Fr. Scott led a beautiful but somber service on Good Friday. The service was titled the Veneration of the Cross and Communion from the Presanctified. The service started in darkness and silence, picking up where the Maundy Thursday service left off. Fr. Scott began the service lying prostrate and praying before the Cross of Our Lord. After time for prayer, he started the service.
After reading an Old Testament Lesson, the Epistle, the Collects, and the Gospel Lesson, Fr. Scott presented his sermon. He started by recounting all the awful events of this day - from the betrayal by Judas, the mock trials, false witnesses, beatings, crown of thorns, and the crucifixion. What is there that is good about Good Friday? Why do Christians choose to wear a cross? God's good creation was damaged initially by Adam and Eve bringing sin into the world but further damaged by all our sin. Only God could fix this, but He didn't have to. He could have just started over. Instead, Jesus Christ endured our world at its worst with loving humility. On Good Friday, we are confronted with the death of our God, but we are comforted by the fact that He thinks we are valuable! Our only proper response is to thank Him. The cross, an instrument used for evil, was turned to good by God.
After the sermon, Fr. Scott led The Veneration of the Cross by the congregation present. This was followed by Holy Communion using the bread sanctified in the Maundy Thursday service.
Thank you Fr. Scott for a very moving service!
Our so very talented Sue, created these beautiful bulletin covers just for our Good Friday service. They are amazing! We are so blessed by your generous sharing of your talents!
Thank you Sue!
Earl graciously opened the church from 9 am to 3 pm for people to come and quietly meditate about a world without our Lord. He also had an Easter Even Meditation bulletin available for people to use during their quiet time at the church.
Thank you, Earl!
After the Easter Even Meditation time, several people met to prepare the church for Easter Sunday. They did a beautiful job as the following pictures show!
Thank you Carole, Rose Marie, Fr. Scott, Scott, Teresa and Earl for decorating the altar and cleaning the church!
Fr. Scott led a beautiful Easter Sunday service! He started by Blessing the Paschal Candle and the Baptismal Font at the back of the church. The lit Paschal Candle was then used to light the altar candles.
Fr. Scott's sermon asked us to think back to Mary Magdalene's mindset as she approached Jesus's tomb after his wrongful arrest, torture, execution, and burial. She may have thought she had chosen wrongly to believe in Him as she now knew he was dead. She had nothing left but grief. Fr. Scott asked us to imagine her hope as she hears and sees Him alive. Jesus sends her to tell the disciples the simple message of "He is Risen". She was the first bearer of this, the greatest news ever told which has changed billions of lives over the centuries. She left the tomb to share the news "He is Risen", let us also leave the tomb to share the Good News. Please find Fr. Scott's complete sermon at the 24:25 mark at the link below:
Thank you Daryl and Teresa for all the beautiful pictures!
Please note, Fr. Scott will be visiting St. Phillip's in Blacksburg next week. During this visit he will meet Bishop Chad Jones who is visiting St. Phillip's. Our service next Sunday will be Morning Prayer.
Ming and Sue played all our beautiful music during this special service. They played the 'Hallelujah Chorus' from Handel's Messiah for the postlude after services! Just WOW!! Please find the postlude music at the 1.03:30 mark at the following link:
Thank you both for all the musical joy you bring to our services!
At Easter services we had a wonderful crowd including regular attendees, a few people we haven't seen in while, some visiting family members, and a few new faces.
Several members of Carole's extended family visited today! What a beautiful family!
Rosalind's sons were visiting for the Easter weekend!
Seeing Sigrid and Fr. Dennis again was wonderful!
Welcome to all the new visitors! We hope you will worship with us again!
Rose Marie provided some wonderful food for us after the service. Thank you, Rose Marie!
After services Carol treated us to the Xristos Anesti Hymn (Christ is Risen) used in Easter celebrations in the Greek Orthodox churches. Thank you Carol for sharing that beautiful hymn!
Sue continues to lead our weekly online prayer group on Tuesday at 11:30. Thank you so much Sue for taking the time each week to lead our prayers! If you have a special prayer request but cannot join us, please send your request to Sue. Please contact Rosalind if you would like to join us on Discord.
Fr. Dennis will be joining us on Sunday, April 25 for a "Big Thank You So Much" celebration! We want to thank him for his trips over the mountains in all kinds of weather to provide St. Peters with Holy Communion. Also we hope he will come visit often! More information to come!
St. Peters looked beautiful on the inside and the outside! Teresa took this beautiful picture of our red bud tree in full bloom on Easter Sunday!
Tues., April 6 11:30 am Online Prayer Group
Sun., April 11 10 am Christian Education, Scott
11 am Morning Prayer
Tues., April 13 11:30 am Online Prayer Group
Sun., April 18 10 am Christian Education Fr. Scott
Church History Series – B.C. to 2nd Century
11 am Holy Communion, Fr. Scott
(cash plate to Fr. Scott’s discretionary fund)
noon – Mission Committee Meeting
Tues., April 20 11:30 am Online Prayer Group
Sun., April 25 10 am Christian Education Fr. Scott