Easter Resources – Presbyterian Pastor Mark D. Roberts: What is “Eastertide?” series

April 20, 2015

Digging through some old drafts of Easter posts prepared in years past, but never finalized and published, I came across some entries by Presbyterian pastor Mark D. Roberts.  He’s one of those non-Anglicans who “gets” the importance of the liturgical seasons and the rhythms of the church year, and I have often posted his resources.  So… several prayers & quotes by Mark D. Roberts will be appearing on the blog this week.  Let me start first by posting links to his series on celebrating the full 50 Days of Easter, since that’s a theme near and dear to my heart.

***

As we all know, even for those of us from liturgical churches, it is very tempting to celebrate Easter for only one day, or one week, and very challenging to remember and practice the celebration of Easter for the full 50 Day Season of “Eastertide.”

Back in 2011 – 2012, Presbyterian pastor and blogger Mark D. Roberts wrote a series examining the tradition of the 50 Day Eastertide season, and giving some practical ideas and encouragement for how to celebrate Easter for more than just a few days.  Here are the links to his Eastertide series.  Below are exceprts from several of the entries.

***

Easter Isn’t Over Yet – An Introduction to Eastertide

During my first year as pastor of Irvine Presbyterian Church, I was finally introduced to a Christian community that stretched the celebration of Easter beyond just a day. Our worship director at the time, Loren Wiebe, explained to me that he took Eastertide quite seriously. This meant, for example, that we’d sing Easter hymns, not only on Easter Sunday itself, but also during worship services in the following weeks. I was ready to experiment with all of this, though I must confess it felt rather strange to sing “Christ the Lord is Risen Today” a couple of weeks after Easter Sunday. (“Christ the Lord is Risen Two Weeks Ago” didn’t work either.) Moreover, the word “Eastertide” sounded strange to me, like some remnant of days gone by. … Slowly, over the years, I’ve grown to appreciate celebrating Easter for more than just a single Sunday.

… I want to write about how we might let [Eastertide] be a time of spiritual growth, a season of deeper intimacy with God. I’ve come to believe that, in many ways, Easter gets short shrift in our churches. As a result, we miss out on some of the richness and joy of a full Easter celebration.

***

Fifty Days of Easter! What Would We Do?

Celebrating Easter for fifty days is not duplicating Easter Sunday fifty times over, either. Rather, it’s taking time to reflect upon and delight in the truth of Easter and its implications for our lives.

The basic truth of Easter is simple. In the classic litany of the church, it’s this: Christ is risen! He is risen, indeed! On Easter Sunday, we celebrate this good news, rediscovering for ourselves what the earliest followers of Jesus realized on that first Easter Sunday. Yet the implications of the resurrection are more than we can adequately ponder on one day. Every year, during my sixteen-year pastoral tenure at Irvine Presbyterian Church, when I prepared my Easter sermon, I left dozens of life-changing truths on the cutting room floor. There’s no way I could begin to probe the depths of Easter in a mere 20 minutes. So, I proclaimed the basic truth of the resurrection and explained one or perhaps two implications.

Eastertide provides an opportunity to see “the director’s cut” of the Easter sermon, if you will. The season of Easter gives us a chance to reflect more broadly and deeply on the multifaceted meaning of the resurrection of Jesus.

What might this involve? Let me suggest a few ideas:

• You could meditate upon what the resurrection says about the character of Jesus Christ as the Righteous One of God (Psalm 16:10; Acts 2:25-28).

• You might ponder the fact that death has been swallowed up in victory (1 Corinthians 15:54-56).

• You could reflect upon the fact that the very power that raised Jesus from the dead is available to you today (Ephesians 1:15-23).

• You might think of how the resurrection of Jesus is a precursor to your own resurrection (1 Corinthians 15).

• You could consider how the resurrection gives us “new birth into a living hope” (1 Peter 1:3).

And so on. And so on. Eastertide allows us to think deeply and to pray broadly about what the resurrection of Jesus means, both to us and to our world.

***

Read the rest of this entry »

Advertisements

A Compilation of 70 Favorite Easter and Eastertide Hymns

April 19, 2015
Easter Hymns

image credit: iTunes

NOTE: This post contains a listing of 70 great Easter hymns, and links to where you can purchase them, as well as links to other good hymn resources, but no audio.  I’ll be posting quite a few of thesehymns here at Lent & Beyond in coming days and weeks…. stay tuned.

***

I notice quite a lot of folks coming to L&B looking for Easter Hymns.  I’m a lover of great Easter hymns, but sadly you might not really know it by browsing Lent & Beyond.  In recent years I’ve posted much more CCM and Contemporary worship music than hymns, primarily because my digital collection of hymns and classical music has until now been quite small.

One of the greatest blessings of the internet, iTunes, YouTube, etc., has been the ability to learn and appreciate a much wider diversity of Eastertide hymns.  In my Episcopal parish growing up, we seemed to sing the same 5 or 6 Easter hymns over and over and over again.  And while that repetition made me grow to love them deeply – they became part of me in a sense – I never realized how much I was missing…

For instance, it wasn’t until I was in my late 20s and working in French-speaking West Africa that I learned the fabulous hymn Thine Be the Glory (actually learning it first in French “A Toi la Gloire, O Ressuscité”) – now one of my absolute Easter playlist essentials!

And then of course, there are online hymnals and their Easter hymn collections which make learning new/old hymns easy these days:

With all of these resources to scour for good hymns, I devoted a fair bit of time (and a bit of money) in recent weeks to significantly increase my Easter hymn and classical music collection and creating a great Easter hymns & classical anthems playlist.

So, in case it’s a blessing and encouragement and helpful resource, here is a current list of 70 favorite Easter hymns. For each hymn I provide details for the version that’s in my playlist (artist, album, purchase link). I have not included details on composers, tune or lyrics.  In most cases you will find that information at Hymnary.org or the Cyber Hymnal.

For some hymns, I’ve included links to some alternate versions, including alternate tunes, instrumental versions, or contemporary renditions. There are a few modern hymns included – such as In Christ Alone.  The majority of these hymns are from the Anglican tradition, but I’ve thrown in a few Evangelical / Gospel type hymns as well.  My tastes are broad – any hymn that focuses on the joy and glory of Christ’s resurrection and His victory over death and His redemption of His people is fair game!

I’d love for commenters to add suggestions and tell us about your favorites!  Let’s turn this into an OPEN THREAD about memories of favorite Easter hymns… what songs do you love and why?

Note: this list includes only hymns.  I may try to create a separate post with some favorite recordings of Easter classical music, carols and anthems.

***

Below is a list of the Titles and Artists for all the hymns.  Here is a link to the Excel Spreadsheet which will give you full details on the album and a purchase link in the iTunes store (US).

Title,  Artist

  • A toi la gloire, Les petits chanteurs de Sainte-Croix de Neuilly
  • All Hail the Power – No. 1 [Instrumental – tune: Coronation], The King’s Brass & Tim Zimmerman
  • All Hail the Power (arr. Sterling Procter – tune: Diadem), The Chancel Choir, The Chapel Choir, Broadway Baptist Church and The Oratorio Chorus, Southwestern Baptist Seminary, The Festival Brass
  • Alleluia! Alleluia! Hearts to Heaven, The Choir Of Sheffield Cathedral
  • Alleluia! Sing to Jesus (with handbells), Concordia Publishing House

Read the rest of this entry »


Practice Resurrection 2015 – This Sacramental Life blog (and a roundup of other resources on the same theme)

April 15, 2015

 

photo credit: Emily Polis Gibson

photo credit: Emily Polis Gibson

OK, I’m really not sure how Tamara Hill Murphy’s blog This Sacramental Life has flown under my radar screen for so long.

By searching Twitter for posts on Eastertide, I came across a Tweet by Tamara with a link to her blog and her entry and exhortation to #PracticeResurrection2015.  It is truly MUST READING for anyone wanting encouragement to celebrate the full 50 days of the Easter Season. 

In reflecting on Wendell Berry’s phrase “practice resurrection” and a passage by NT Wright in Surprised by Hope, Tamara writes about her resolve to celebrate Christ’s Resurrection throughout the 50 days of Eastertide and encourages us to join her!

For the next six weeks (from now until Pentecost), will you join me in feasting on Resurrection goodness in our everyday lives?  It can be as simple as a special candle you use for your meals during Eastertide or as elaborate as travelling across the world to meet new people.  Whatever it is, will you show us a picture and tell us a few words?   Plant spring flowers (maybe a new variety this year)?  Show us! Get up to see the sun rise on a Sunday morning?  Tell us about it! Take a new route to work (maybe taking more time than necessary in honor of the mad farmer)?  Share it!

Three steps to play along:

  1. Add something to your day that helps you practice resurrection. (one day or fifty days doesn’t matter)

  2. Take a picture and write a description in 1-50 words.

  3. Share it with me via an email, Facebook or hashtag it on Twitter or Instagram #practiceresurrection2015.  I’ll share some of your photo-stories with everyone here each week.

Also check out her Easter 2015 daybook posts.

UPDATE:   I’ve just discovered:  Tamara is a contributor to an excellent EASTERTIDE Devotional produced by Christ Church Austin.  I’m so excited to find this.  You can read it online, or download a PDF version.

***

In case it’s helpful, here’ are links to some other blog entries & resources we’ve linked in the past that focus on this same theme:

Tara at Story Formed blog:

Amy at Splendor in the Ordinary Blog:

Emily Polis Gibson at Barnstorming

Christine Sine at Godspace:

WAU.org Resource Guide for Celebrating Easter’s 50 Days

And for various entries I just discovered this year and posted in our Eastertide Resources Compilation


We just updated our Easter Music index post

April 11, 2015

I’ve just updated our Easter Music Series index post with the five new musical selections we posted this week.

You’ll find the updated version here.


Easter 2015 – menu of links and resources

April 11, 2015

He_Has_RisenUPDATED: 19 April 2015

This post will remain sticky during Easter. Look for new entries below.

Alleluia! Christ is Risen!
The Lord is Risen Indeed, Alleluia!!

All of us at Lent & Beyond wish our readers a glorious Easter celebrating the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ! We’ve posted a lot of good Easter devotional resources over the years:

See also: Easter Devotionals, Easter Music, Easter Prayers, Easter Quotes, Easter Resources

A few featured posts:

Remember, Easter is a 50 day season! I hope to be able to post often throughout Easter – prayers, music, quotes, devotionals – to help me, and all of us, to live in the joy and reality of the resurrection each day. So stay tuned…

Hallelujah, He is Risen!

art credit


Easter video: “Dance Your Shoes Off”

April 10, 2015

I found this via Ann Voskamp’s 2011 blog archives.  What fun!

Here are a few of the lyrics.  Great words.  May it be true of us today!

This is a celebration…We’re people of His Kingdom.  His resurrection is our freedom, for every heart, every tongue and every tribe. …

We will rise up. He’s alive, He’s alive inside us, and we will rise up.  We claim the victory He won on Calvary. Celebrate the King of Glory, so rise up, people of the Lord rise up. … We carry the love that has redeemed us. … We will dance for the One who shines brighter than the sun.

May our Easter faith be marked by this kind of contagious and visible JOY!

 

Published on Apr 12, 2011

Second Baptist Church Houston | More than 2,000 people from Second Baptist Church, Houston, Texas, gathered at Discovery Green in the heart of Houston to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus. The purpose of Dance Your Shoes Off! was to proclaim the resurrection of Jesus Christ in a powerful and celebratory way. Most importantly, each participant left a new pair of shoes on the field for those in need. These shoes will be given to local mission agencies, including Star of Hope, individuals all across the world through our mission partners and mission trips.

NOTE: This event was inspired by our fellow believers in Budapest: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i5dSIL….

CREDITS: The song was commissioned by Second Baptist Church for this event. It is called “Rise Up” sung by Lauren James Camey and produced by Joshua Moore. Voice over by Lyle Countryman. Song is available on iTunes: http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/rise…


A compilation of Easter Quotes we’ve posted since 2009

April 9, 2015

Last update: 9 April 2015

easter-wordartWell we have compilations of Easter prayers, Easter poems, Easter music, Eastertide resource links…, but up until now, I’ve not pulled together a compilation of all the Easter-themed quotations we’ve posted at the blog over the years.  There are more than I remembered, and many are really good and worth browsing  (if we do say so ourselves…!)  So, it’s time to list all our Easter Quotes entries in one place.

Entries are in chronological order, most recent first.  I’ll try to update this periodically throughout the Easter 2015 season.

(art credit)

***

2015 entries:

***

2014 entries:

***

2012 Entries:

***

2009 Entries:

***

Note: You might also want to browse our Lent Quotes and Holy Week Quotes, as many of those contain Easter themes.


%d bloggers like this: