You’d think the task of ‘explaining Easter’ would not be a tough one for a minister. Hm.
I have the privilege of writing occasionally for the parents’ resource website Kiwi Families. Mostly it’s great fun, but sometimes it’s flippin’ hard work, like the other week, when the editor, Rochelle, asked if I could write something about the meaning of Easter.
I’d managed to avoid doing so last year, excusing myself with a new baby and postnatal depression, but I thought I’d really better give it a crack this year. I’m pleased I did, but it wasn’t easy.
There’s so much to say, and so much not to say. Of course, of course, Easter is the absolute pinnacle of the church calendar, where we remember and even re-enact the core events of the Christian faith. These are the days we believe changed the composition of the universe. Are you feeling the pressure yet?
But Easter has been encumbered, over the centuries, with so much frippery – both traditional and theological – that I just want to dunk the whole week in a bucket of soapy water to clean off the accumulated layers of muck and facepaint. If we scrub away the bunnies and smooth the harsh patina of penal substitution so other colours and ideas are visible, what does Easter look like, coming out of the wash?
Here’s what I came up with for Kiwi Families. There’s more and less to say, but it’s a start. I’d love your thoughts.