The New Room is sharing a Friday reflection each week during the time that we are closed. Even though we cannot currently join together for our usual Friday lunchtime Communion service in the chapel, we hope that these short reflections will act as a point of spiritual focus, enabling a moment of quiet thought and prayer.
Rev Hilary Cooke, retired minister and a volunteer at the New Room
‘Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb…… ‘
I’ve always liked the idea that the hope of Easter was discovered ‘while it was still dark….’ And perhaps this year, in particular it does seem to be important that the victory of hope is there in the darkness.
I regularly use Children’s stories – one I often read at Easter is ‘Can’t you sleep little Bear’ (it is by Martin Waddell and you should be able to find a version of it online). It’s about a little bear who learns that he doesn’t have to be afraid of the dark.
At Christmas many people celebrate the birth of Christ at services at midnight on Christmas eve. In the darkness, Jesus the light of the world comes into our lives. When I was a minister in Swindon we always held a service at midnight on Easter Saturday – it was the first time I had ever shared the first celebration of Easter in the middle of the night and it was I think one of the most meaningful Easter services I have experienced. A large candle (The Pascal candle) is brought into a totally dark church and from it the congregation light their own small candles. Jesus the light of the world coming forever to lighten our Darkness.
Risen Lord as we offer to you our own lives and
the fears and concerns of those across the world
may the victory of Easter give us light and hope
Jesus forever the light of the world,
lighten our darkness with the joy of your presence. Amen