Easter Sunday

8:30am | Family-friendly, nursery provided

 

Historical Context

Easter Sunday marks the first Sunday of the Easter season, which continues through Pentecost. Originally, in the ancient church, Easter Sunday did not have a proper liturgy because the Easter Vigil continued into Easter Sunday and concluded with the Eucharist. Different parts of the church throughout history used this time to dramatize the women returning to the empty tomb or to consecrate a new church. At Imago, we continue our celebration from the Easter Vigil into Sunday morning. We repeat the Easter Acclamation, we baptize people, and we share the Eucharist. These services minister the joy that was released through the Great Vigil of Easter.

 

WHAT YOU SEE & HEAR

BAPTISMS: Baptism as the passage from death to life is powerfully reinforced by the celebration of Jesus’ resurrection.

ASPERGES: We rejoice in our own baptisms as the clergy sprinkle the waters of baptism on the congregation.

EASTER ACCLAMATION: To mark the end of the Lent and as the climax of our Holy Week pilgrimage, Fr. Justin proclaims, “Alleluia! Christ is Risen!”

FLOWERS AND BANNERS: After a season of visual fasting, the beauty of the Lord’s resurrection is reflected in the sanctuary being filled with fresh flowers and bright banners, flags, and ribbons. 

DANCING: Is a response to the healing and joy of the Lord’s presence. It has grown to be an integral part of our Easter experience, as children and adults alike overflow with the joy of the Resurrection.

 

DEVOTIONAL

We have arrived at our culminating Holy Week service: Easter morning. One word perfectly sums up this service: joy! Having walked with Jesus through the suffering, pain, and anguish of this week, the celebration of the Easter service is all the sweeter. Experiencing the weight of our sin and the cost of Jesus’ sacrifice on Good Friday gives us all the more reason to rejoice at Jesus’ ultimate victory. We recognize the depth of the darkness from which Jesus has saved us.

We also rejoice in what we are saved for: eternal and abundant life with the Lord. Through Jesus’ final victory, the victory over death itself, we are able to be with God now and forever. We will not be with God simply in a metaphorical or ethereal way—no, we are promised that we will share in Jesus’ resurrection. We will be able to walk with Jesus when he resurrects our physical bodies and we live with him on a restored earth.  The palpable joy in this service comes from being in the presence of the Lord and is a taste of the heavenly joy we will one day experience in fullness. This service invites us to enter into this glimpse of heaven with childlike faith and to revel in the joy of being with God and in his power. Dance and proclaim that the Lord is good and that the Lord has done it: he has won the victory!

 

YOUR RESPONSE

When was the last time you experienced or witnessed true joy? How was it different from feeling simply happy?

Easter Sunday is a wonderful day to bring guests. Is there someone you could invite to this party?

What stands out to you most about this service?

 

Easter Lilies

EASTER LILIES ARE AVAILABLE AGAIN THIS YEAR

We place lilies around the altar in memory of loved ones during our Easter Service in the blessed hope of the Resurrection.

 

 

 

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Easter Vigil

Family-Friendly, nursery provided

7:00pm Saturday| at Imago Dei Anglican Church

 

Historical Context

The Great Vigil of Easter is the crowning jewel of Holy Week marking the first part of the celebration of Easter. This service highlights our deep desire to meet the Lord through Word and Sacrament by the power of the Holy Spirit as well as our desire to use the arts in order to make abstract theological concepts concrete and accessible. It is a “sacramental” moment when the invisible realities are made visible and we receive grace by faith through various mediums.

The Vigil begins after sunset on Holy Saturday, remembering the time when Jesus passed from death to life, and extends through the night, culminating in the church’s acclamation to the world at the Easter Sunday service.  Of all the services celebrated during Holy Week, the Easter Vigil is the oldest known service of the week. The earliest references to the Vigil are found in the second century. In the third and fourth centuries, Christians believed this was the most significant holy day for new Christians to declare their faith and become full members of the family of God through baptism. The Easter Vigil celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead and looks forward to his coming again in glory to fully reconcile the world to himself. The Easter Vigil has four important parts: the Service of Light, the readings, baptism, and the Eucharist.

 

The Service of Light is often referred to as the Exsultet. The light represents our passage from the darkness of death on Good Friday into the light of life on Easter Sunday. It is at this time that the Paschal Candle is lit from a new fire outside of the church. Clergy members then process into the sanctuary with the light. As they reach the doors of the sanctuary, they stop and knock prior to entering. As the Paschal Candle enters the room, it is the only light. The Paschal Candle will burn during every service through Easter until Pentecost.

 

For the rest of the night, we celebrate the Liturgy of the Word, or the Vigil readings. At Imago, we will spend one hour exploring each reading through worship, song, and Holy Spirit ministry time. It is a time for us to slow down and dig deeply into the story of salvation presented to us through the Vigil readings. Throughout history, the number of readings has varied. There are nine readings currently found in the Book of Common Prayer.

 

The Baptismal and Easter Acclamation service begins, and candidates for baptism are presented and baptized by candlelight, even as the congregation renews their own baptismal vows. Finally, we reach the moment that we wait for patiently during Lent and all of Holy Week: the Easter Acclamation and the Holy Noise. The celebrant exclaims to the people: “Alleluia, Christ is risen!” And the people respond: “The Lord is risen, indeed! Alleluia!” At this time, we shout and sing and dance as we celebrate the hope given to us all those many years ago on that first Easter Sunday morning, and we rejoice in the expectation of the return of Christ in the future. This is truly the greatest moment of the entire year. We then conclude the service by celebrating the Eucharist, enjoying together the family communion meal that makes us one with Jesus’ and unites us with the church throughout the ages. The Eucharist reminds us throughout the year of the death and resurrection of Jesus which we celebrate during Holy Week, and the first Eucharist of Easter is an especially poignant moment as it concludes our Holy Week pilgrimage.

 

The day before Easter is called Holy Saturday and marks the day that Jesus’ body rested in the tomb. On this day, we do not celebrate Communion. Essentially this is a day of waiting for the resurrection. During the early days of the church, this was a day of fasting for remembrance and peaceful contemplation. At a later point in church history, those who were newly converted to Christianity used this as a day to publically declare their faith in Jesus. After sunset on Saturday, the Great Vigil of Easter would begin, marking the first part of the celebration of Easter. This service highlights our deep desire to meet the Lord through Word and Sacrament by the power of the Holy Spirit.  We also want to begin to use the arts in order to make abstract theological concepts concrete and accessible. It is a “sacramental” moment when the invisible realities are made visible and we receive grace by faith through various mediums.  Dramatists or artists are asked to be preachers by using their gifts to proclaim the heart of the Gospel.

 

WHAT YOU SEE & HEAR

SERVICE OF LESSONS: Old Testament readings are presented dramatically at our Easter Festival in order to bring a sensory immediacy to the sacramental reality of the texts.

SERVICE BEGINS IN DARKNESS: The Great Vigil of Easter begins in darkness because this service moves us from the darkness of Jesus’ death on Good Friday to the light of life found in Jesus’ resurrection at sunrise on Easter morning.

POUNDING ON DOOR: Fr. Justin pounds on the doors of the sanctuary as a reminder that Christ broke down the doors of Hell when he defeated death.

“THE LIGHT OF CHRIST”: The early church would strike a light on Jesus’ tomb and carry the flame with them throughout their celebration of his resurrection. Today, we light a Paschal candle every year as a reminder of the pillar of fire that led the Israelites to safety in Exodus 13. THE EXSULTET: Also known as the “Easter Proclamation,” this poetic hymn is sung by a cantor and brings the salvation narrative of Holy Week into focus around the Light of Christ. CONGREGATIONAL CANDLES: The light from the Paschal candle is spread to the whole congregation as a symbol of the intensely personal nature of Christ’s presence with each of us. THE HOLY NOISE: The conclusion of the Great Vigil of Easter takes place when the celebrant declares that Christ is risen. Imago has taken the ancient custom of ringing bells in celebration to new heights through the “Holy Noise,” when the entire congregation makes a “joyful noise unto the Lord.”

BAPTISMS: Baptism as the passage from death to life is powerfully reinforced by the celebration of Jesus’ resurrection.

ASPERGES: We rejoice in our own baptisms as the clergy sprinkle the waters of baptism on the congregation.

EASTER ACCLAMATION: To mark the end of the Lent and as the climax of our Holy Week pilgrimage, Fr. Justin proclaims, “Alleluia! Christ is Risen!”

 

DEVOTIONAL

The Great Vigil of Easter is the crowning jewel in our Holy Week pilgrimage. While you may be tempted to think that of Easter Sunday, in reality it is this quiet service that begins in darkness on Holy Saturday and erupts into joyous celebration Easter morning that encapsulates our pilgrimage. Hour by hour, we walk with the Lord from death to life, until the glorious moment when a Spirit-filled impartation of joy is released and we celebrate that the resurrection is, indeed, real. As we keep vigil through the night with Jesus, we join with believers who, for millennia, have understood the incredible significance of this evening and have given up sleep, despite being near the end of a long pilgrimage, in order to worship and pray. This is how we find ourselves dancing and singing at sunrise on Easter Sunday, sleepless as we may be. The joy of the Gospel overtakes us and we celebrate with childlike freedom the hope that we have as children of the living God.

 

YOUR RESPONSE

When was the last time that you were moved by the joy of the resurrection?

What stands out to you most about this service

Material used with permission from: © 2016 Church of the Resurrection. All rights reserved. 935 W. Union Ave. Wheaton, IL 60187 churchrez.org Editor: Meghan Robins

Everyone has questions. Join us and #Tryalpha at Imago Dei Church. 

We believe everyone should have the chance to explore the Christian faith, ask questions and share their point of view; wherever they are in the world.

Join us at 6:30pm on Wednesday evenings at 56 Center St. in Bangor. No cost. No pressure. No follow up.


Imago Dei Anglican Church

Welcome! We are a community in downtown Bangor, Maine enjoying God, loving others, and joining with Jesus for the restoration of all things.


Joining with Jesus

UP | IN | OUT  events at Imago


Going Deeper

your next steps in following Jesus


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Our safe and engaging worship experience that allows our youngest members to learn about the Father’s love, to come to know Jesus as their Lord and provide them the space to hear from Him through the ministry of the Holy Spirit.

On Sunday mornings we offer Nursery for children 0-3, as well as Catechesis of the Good Shepherd for children ages 4-10 . Older children remain in the service, serving in roles within our church's worship.


Celebrating Story

HAVE A TESTIMONY OF RESTORATION? 

Tell us what Jesus did for you and you might get to share it Sunday!

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Good Friday

Contemplative Atmosphere, nursery provided, older kids welcome

Friday 7:00 pm at Imago Dei Anglican Church

 

Historical Context

Good Friday is a solemn remembrance of Jesus’ sacrifice of his own life so that we might find forgiveness and reconciliation with God. This is not a somber recapitulation of Jesus’ death, but rather a thankful and reverently joyful recollection of his death that gave us life. This day and the next—Holy Saturday—are the only two days of the church calendar when there is no Eucharistic celebration. Traditionally, this service can be held at three o’clock in the afternoon or later to mark the hour of Jesus’ death according to the Gospels. It is believed that the liturgy for this service is derived from the earliest days of Christianity. The service begins in silence and with prayer. The clergy process into the room silently, dressed in black. In some traditions, they prostrate themselves before the cross at this point. Our readings for the day are from Isaiah’s Suffering Servant poem (Isa. 52:13–53:12) and from the sermon to the Hebrews in which the author explains Jesus’ role as our great High Priest and Mediator (Heb. 10:1-25). At this time, we return to the same Gospel reading that we read on Palm Sunday— the Passion (John 18:1–19:37). This service also includes the praying of the Solemn Collects in which we intercede for the church, our nation, and the world. Our Communion for this service consists of wafers that have already been blessed during the previous night’s Maundy Thursday Eucharist. Good Friday is not a Eucharist service because we are remembering that Christ’s body was in the grave, and we are waiting for his resurrected body to bring us new life. Finally, we take time to venerate (esteem or adore) the cross. At Imago Dei Anglican Church, we lay the cross down on the chancel stage, and all who feel to draw near, remove a rose from the font, place it in the nail holes of the cross and touch the cross and pray. It is a powerful time of connection with our sacrificial Savior. Healing prayer is offered at this time.

 

WHAT YOU SEE & HEAR

SILENT PROCESSION: The clergy enters the room in silence to highlight Good Friday as the continuation of the long service that begins on Maundy Thursday and ends with the Great Vigil of Easter.

PROCESSION OF THE CROSS: The congregation is invited into the immediacy of the wood of the cross as it is carried through the sanctuary.

VENERATION OF THE CROSS: This tradition dates back to the fourth century, when Christians venerated the wood of Jesus’ actual cross. At Imago, we believe that this practice takes us out of time and, by the Holy Spirit, into the event of Christ’s crucifixion. It is not a reenactment, but instead a sacred moment when we are given the gift of repentance as we physically touch the cross and are moved by Jesus’ healing presence on the cross.

PRAYER MINISTERS: Because this service is marked by the immediacy of the saving power of the cross, we fill the room with prayer ministers who are trained and ready to enter into that moment with you in prayer.

 

DEVOTIONAL

In the pilgrimage of Holy Week, Good Friday brings us to a somber and contemplative halt. From the moment the silent procession enters the sanctuary until we all leave in silence, we are invited into a focused contemplation of Jesus’ death on the cross. Each scripture reading, prayer, and song points us to one man’s experience on an ancient instrument of torture. Why? Because we believe that the moment Jesus died on the cross was the moment the entire world was rescued from sin and death. That is why we spend so much time savoring the reality of the cross. On Good Friday, we celebrate both the specific instant in history when Jesus redeemed us and the reality that his healing power can meet us in our sinfulness today. We invite the Holy Spirit to give us the grace to acknowledge our personal sinfulness and then to immediately find forgiveness and empowerment available at the cross. It is a stunningly personal opportunity to ask the Lord to highlight the sins and the shame keeping us from drawing close to him and then to set those sins down on the wood of the cross.

 

YOUR RESPONSE

Is there a sinful habit or thought pattern that the Lord may be asking you to put into his cross this Good Friday?

What stands out to you the most about this service?

Material used with permission from: © 2016 Church of the Resurrection. All rights reserved. 935 W. Union Ave. Wheaton, IL 60187 churchrez.org Editor: Meghan Robins

Clergy & Staff

 
 
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Rev. Justin HowardRector   email:  justin@idachurch.com

Justin and his wife Amy have six amazingly energetic boys: Josiah, Simeon, Judah, Elijah, Aidan and Noel who fill their lives with wild joy. He was born in New York City and raised in the Catskill Mountains in upstate New York. Having earned his BA in Religion and Ministry at Houghton College, Justin went on to study at Asbury and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminaries. Longing for a place where the Scriptural, Sacramental, and Spirit-filled facets of his faith experience could converge and find full expression, Justin found his home in the Anglican way as an ordained Priest. Justin enjoys chasing his boys, sitting in front of his wood-stove, reading and sipping tea with his wife, having deep theological conversations, and watching the Holy Spirit transform lives.

 

Rev. Piper Runnion-BarefordAssistant Pastor   email: piper@idachurch.com

Piper and her much loved dog Zeke are excited to move to Bangor to be part of the work that the LORD is doing through Imago Dei Anglican Church. Piper earned a bachelor of music in harp performance from Curtis Institue of Music and a Master of Divinity with a focus in evangelism from Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary. She has spent the last several years being part of a church planting team in Manchester, NH while working as a Suzuki piano and harp teacher. Piper loves to worship and lives to see lives transformed by the healing love of Jesus through the work of the Holy Spirit. In obedience to the LORD’s call she is a Priest in the Anglican Church, and deeply enjoys being able to teach, worship and play, especially with those under the age of ten. Piper often can be found walking with Zeke and is always up for grabbing a cup of coffee and hearing what Jesus is doing in your life!

 

Scott DeLongParish Administrator email: parishadmin@idachurch.com

As a lifelong resident of Greater Bangor, Scott deeply loves this region and is passionate about seeing God’s Kingdom flourish here. He received a BS in Science Education from the University of Maine and currently spends time ministering on the Orono campus with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship. After experiencing transformation and healing through prayer ministry and discipleship, Scott found a home in the vibrant community of Imago Dei with its Spirit-filled Anglican identity. You can usually find him seated happily at anyone’s dinner table, outside marveling at creation and not that lost, or in a local coffeeshop more interested in conversation than in the dozen books he brought to read.

 

Pastoral Care & Spiritual Direction

 
 
 

Amy Howard Lay Pastor, Spiritual Director, Healing Prayer emailamy@idachurch.com

Amy grew up in Bangor and received her Bachelor of Music in vocal performance at the Greatbatch School of Music, at Houghton College. Having met both the third member of the Trinity as well as the president of the theological society (Justin) during her Sophomore year at Houghton, she traded in Brahms for the prayer room, and quiet Sunday afternoons for family life with six kiddos. She spends most of her time being formed in the image of Christ by way of cooking, finger-painting, changing diapers, praying with anyone who happens to stumble into the kitchen, and imagining witty responses to the people who keep asking her if she wants to “be like the Duggers.” She is a licensed Spiritual Director for the Anglican Diocese in New England and was trained by Christian Healing Ministries in whole-person healing. Amy’s goal is fulfilling the first and greatest commandment during her lifetime.

 

Beth RogersSpiritual Director   emailr.beth2013@gmail.com

Beth Rogers did her undergrad work in Child Development/ Elementary Education at UMO and then went on to get her MA in Theology from Grace Evangelical College and Seminary. She is a trained Spiritual Director through ADNE and is currently taking Christian Counseling courses at Grace Evangelical. She has an office in Bangor where she deeply enjoys walking with people as they journey with Christ and grow as His followers. Beth lives in Bangor with her husband Jim. Together they raised four children and are happily enjoying life surrounded by their ever growing extended family.

 

Douglas E. Towle, M.S., LCPC-c, Clinical Professional Counseling  emaild.edmondtowle@gmail.com

Doug and his wife Shanna live in Palmyra, where Doug serves as a Home and Community Treatment (HCT) clinical therapist, serving families in their own homes. Doug was born in Manchester, NH, and served as a United States Marine. While working as a truck driver, Doug was called to ministry, and in 2005 he began his post-secondary education at Grace Evangelical College & Seminary, earning his A.A. in Christian Ministry in 2009 and his B.A. in Biblical Studies in 2011.  Upon completion of his studies, he began pastoral ministry by providing counseling to church members and serving as a counseling resource to area pastors. In 2015, he completed his M.S. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at Husson University. He is conditionally licensed by the state of Maine as a clinical professional counselor (LCPC-c) and is certified by the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC).

 

Missionaries

 

Jonathan Kenerson, Area Director for Northern Maine - InterVarsity Christian Fellowship

Jon Kenerson lives with his wife Chrissy and their five kids on their family’s farm in Levant. Jon is a part-time manager at Treworgy Family Orchards as well as a part-time Assistant Area Director for InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, overseeing and expanding collegiate ministry in central and northern Maine. As an alumni of UMaine he has a desire to transform the academic community with the hope and love uniquely found in the person of Jesus. He enjoys strong coffee, dancing to loud music with his kids, and living in his work-in-progress house.

 

Beth Fisher, Intern Guide - Lifelines

Sent from Imago Dei Anglican Church to reach college students on New Hampshire campuses though the ministry of Lifelines (a subset of Cru.) When not guiding for Lifelines, she can be found practicing photography or whitewater kayaking!.


Parish Council Members

Trevor Gordon, Senior Warden

Aaron Watt, Junior Warden

Lynne Dumont, Treasurer

Demelza Ramirez, Clerk

Emily Batchelder, Member-at-Large

Nicole Finley, Member-at-Large

Ashley Nute, Member-at-Large

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Easter Lilies are available again this year

We place lilies around the altar in memory of loved ones during our Easter Service in the blessed hope of the Resurrection.

If you would like to purchase an Easter lily in memory of a loved one, please fill out the form below to ensure the correct information is published in our Easter bulletin. Each lily is $16 and can be purchased by check on Sunday morning or online below. 

 

Name *
Name
if ordering multiple memorial lilies, please separate names with commas

 

Each lily is $16 . 

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Vespers by Candlelight

Contemplative atmosphere, no nursery provided – we encourage parents to rotate who will come on which night.  Older children are welcome.

Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday evenings from 7-8pm

 

Since the earliest days, Christians have engaged in set times of prayer throughout the day.  “Vespers” is the Latin word for “evening,” or “evening star,” and so evening prayers took on the name “Vespers” among other names.  This is a time of settling, of being, of abiding, of allowing the Holy Spirit to examine our own souls as we engage moments of prayer, scripture reading, singing, and quietness. It will be a Service of Light and Evening Prayer from the Book of Common Prayer, with a contemplative presentation made by a lay leader each night.  

This is the perfect way to fix our gaze for Holy Week. 

Material used with permission from: © 2016 Church of the Resurrection. All rights reserved. 935 W. Union Ave. Wheaton, IL 60187 churchrez.org Editor: Meghan Robins

Sign Up to Serve on a Ministry Team!

Fall 2016 - June 2017

There are several ways member and regular attenders can serve Sunday morning, but to be on a rotation, you need to register. Volunteers are typically scheduled for one month of serving, followed by two months off. Click the links below to find out more info about each Ministry Team & fill out your availability for the team[s] you want to serve on!

Altar Guild

Would you like to serve on Sundays as part of the Altar Guild?
We are responsible for preparing the altar, communion vessels, and all liturgical items for Sunday Celebration and special services. Sign up to learn more!

A/v Team

Would you like to serve on Sundays as part of the AV team? We are responsible for setting up the sound system, monitoring the sound board, and working with the band and worship leaders to provide what is needed to enhance worship through amplification and visual technology. No experience necessary. Sign up to learn more!

ImagoKids Team

Would you like to serve on Sundays as part of the ImagoKids team? We are in need of volunteers to help with our check-in system and to serve as assistants in both our 3-5 year old and 6-7 year old classrooms. We also need volunteers who are willing to serve as nursery assistants. If you are interested, please sign up for more information!

Connections Team

We love people at Imago! Our connections team is dedicated to makingSunday mornings a friendly and easy experience for visitors and ensuring our space is safe for all our members. The connections team is looking for ushers, greeters, and volunteers to help with hospitality. Sign up to learn more!

Chancel Party

Would you like to serve on Sundays as part of the Chancel Party? The chancel party are lay leaders who serve as chalice bearers, readers, and assistants at the altar. Sign up to learn more!

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Palm Sunday 

Family-friendly | Nursery provided

8:15am | Liturgy of the Palms and Procession through the neighborhood and through the doors of the Church. Bring your kids in their strollers or backpacks - we love to sing and shout Hosanna to the Son of David! on the sidewalks of Bangor as we wave palm branches.

8:30am Sunday Celebration of Word and Sacrament

 

HISTORICAL CONTEXT

On Palm Sunday, we celebrate the entrance of Jesus as King in to the city of Jerusalem, the historical capital of the Kingdom of Israel and the eternal capital of the Messiah.  By the time of Jesus, this was a celebration reserved of the Roman Emperor and his family alone.  Historically, the “Roman triumph” was awarded by the Roman Senate to generals and their armies who were returning from a decisive military victory.  Roman emperors would stride into the city on horseback with a giant parade, dragging along the spoils of war – both riches and prisoners.  As the emperor, his soldiers, and those who were part of his victory party rode into the city, the crowed would join the procession behind them as they made their way to a temple for a sacrifice.

 

Jesus made an important statement to the people as he rode into the ancient city on a donkey colt (a symbolic animal of peace).  Like a great emperor returning victoriously from war, he was greeted by the crowds with shouts of triumph and joy and waving palm branches, “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!” (Luke 19:38).  Jesus’ triumphal entry declares to everyone that he is King and Lord and that he will be victorious in his mission to defeat sin and death once and for all. 

 

The Church has preserved this celebration and enters into Jesus’ triumphal arrival to Jerusalem through the liturgy and celebration of Palm Sunday, which marks the beginning of Holy Week.  Palm Sunday sets the tone for Holy Week as one of ultimate victory and joy.  The Procession on this day holds special significance because it is the beginning of one liturgical movement that arcs through Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and the Easter Vigil.  Historically, the clergy would begin the procession outside the church building.  The palms – an ancient symbol of triumph and victory – are blessed outside, prior to the procession, and waved by the crowd as the cross, Gospel book, and clergy pass by.  The whole congregation joins the procession and enters the sanctuary together.

 

WHAT YOU SEE AND HEAR

WAVING PALM BRANCHES:  In Matthew 21, it says that crowds waved and placed branches at Jesus’ feet as he made his triumphal entry into Jerusalem.  Palm branches are an ancient symbol of goodness, victory, and triumph.

A PROCESSIONAL:  We march through part of our neighborhood both to participate in Jesus’ own entry into Jerusalem as a victorious king and to announce the beginning of Holy Week.

SHOFAR:  The blowing of a ram horn is a Hebrew custom based on the Bible’s description of its use as a herald of the coming of a king.

THE PASSION READING:  This passage from the Gospel is read dramatically by a number of people in order to orient the congregation to the ruling story of Holy Week.  The congregation participates in this reading by acting as those who call for Jesus’ crucifixion. 

INCENSE:  Burned as a tangible reminder of God’s presence with us in the Old Testament, incense is traditionally used on holy days.  The incense is carried by a person called the thurifer.  The incense also represents our prayers rising to God in heaven. (Psalm 141:2; Revelation 7)

LITURGICAL COLOR CHANGE FROM PURPLE TO RED:  This shift is meant to capture the dramatic arc of the service.  Purple, a royal color, is under for the processional as we usher in King Jesus.  Then, after the Passion reading, purple is changed to passion red, which is the liturgical color for Palm Sunday and a symbol of Jesus’ death and crucifixion.  The changing colors capture the dramatic juxtaposition that takes place, as the same crowd of people goes from praising Jesus to calling for his murder – a stark picture of our own vacillations. 

 

DEVOTIONAL

Palm Sunday is an invitation to the journey of Holy Week – a journey to healing.  As we wave our palm branches and acclaim Jesus as our King as the people in Jerusalem did that day, we walk beside Jesus toward Jerusalem, toward the place of sacrifice, as we experience his inevitable and eternal victory.

 

However, when we arrive with Jesus in Jerusalem there is a dramatic shift, we hear the Passion reading – the account of Jesus’ trial and crucifixion.  The same crowd that was worshipping Jesus now turns against him, calling for his death.  Again, we see ourselves in the crowd realizing our own sin of rejecting Jesus so often.  In the grittiness and length of the Passion reading, we realize the depth of suffering Jesus endured for us.

 

The prayers of Palm Sunday focus on Jesus’ suffering.  We are called to imitate Jesus in his humility and to walk with him through his suffering and death. We do this so that we might also share in his resurrection and victory – a victory that we have had a glimpse of in this service.  This invitation is not to be taken lightly.  If, by faith, we embrace the call to share in Jesus’ suffering and allow the Lord to meet us, we will be changed.  Whether this is your first of fiftieth journey through Holy Week, the Lord Jesus is calling you to walk this difficult and holy road with him.

 

YOUR RESPONSE

How is the Lord inviting you to walk with him this week?

What does it mean to walk with Jesus in his suffering?

 

 

 

Material used with permission from: © 2016 Church of the Resurrection. All rights reserved. 935 W. Union Ave. Wheaton, IL 60187 churchrez.org Editor: Meghan Robins

What the Marriage Course?

The Marriage Course is a series of seven sessions, designed to help couples invest in their relationship and build a stronger marriage.

Over seven sessions, the course will help you to:

  • Understand each other’s needs;
  • Communicate more effectively;
  • Grow closer by learning methods to resolve conflict;
  • Recover from the ways you may have hurt each other;
  • Recognise how your upbringing affects your relationship;
  • Improve relationships with parents and in-laws;
  • Develop greater sexual intimacy;
  • Discover each other’s “love language” and much, much more….

Who is it for?

The Marriage Course is for any married couple who is seeking to strengthen their relationship. Some couples do the course to invest in their relationship, others need more urgent help. Either way, the course offers a lifetime of practical ideas and tools to help keep your relationship strong.

The Marriage Course is based on Christian principles but designed for all couples with or without a church background.

What can we expect?

On The Marriage Course, you are seated at your own table for two. Each session consists of a catered meal, a pre-recorded talk on DVD and a time for private discussion between you and your partner.

Background music ensures that you can chat in complete privacy. You never share anything about your relationship with anyone other than your partner.

The cost for The Marriage Course is $150/couple, which includes meals for 7 weeks as well as your books & materials.

**we offer nursery for children 0-3 only, although we highly encourage couples to find childcare at their own homes. We believe there's value in traveling together as a couple to and from this event. 

What are the details?

The Marriage Course runs seven Wednesday evenings at 6:30pm starting February 7th

56 Center St. Bangor, ME 04401

Ok, we're in!

--Registration Closed for this Event --

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We hope you had a powerful time at the Encounter God Weekend.

If you have a testimony of how God encountered you and how you left changed, we'd love to hear it! 

Your testimony will remain anonymous and we do not receive any personal identifying information through this submission.

 

 

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Maundy Thursday (Three Locations at 6:30pm)

Family-friendly and informal but no nursery provided – the service has been designed for adults and kids of all ages

This year we aren't meeting at the church building - we will gather in three different homes. Below is the details for each location so you can choose where you would like to attend. Please click on one location to sign up, so we’ll be ready for you and your family!

 

Howard Home

132 FOURTH ST. | OLD TOWN

20 MIN NORTH OF THE CHURCH

 

Long Home

41 SKYLINE DR. | HOLDEN

20 MIN SOUTHEAST OF THE CHURCH

 

Gordon home

320 TODD'S CORNER RD. | ST. ALBANS

45 MIN WEST OF THE CHURCH

 

HISTORICAL CONTEXT

On Maundy Thursday, we gather for the second service of Holy Week that makes Jesus’ Last Supper with his disciples prior to his arrest by the Jewish leaders.  On this night, the apostle John recorded that Jesus washed his disciples’ feet and gave his disciples the model for the Eucharist and a “new command” to love each other as Jesus loved them (John 13:34).  Maundy is a word derived from the Latin which means “mandate” or “command.”

 

Jesus shows the full extent of his love by taking on the position of the lowest slave in the act of foot washing – a very unusual behavior for a rabbi who was supposed to be humble but never give up us station of superior authority.  Jesus adorns himself as a slave and washes his disciples’ feet in the manner of ancient hospitality to prepare guests to sit together around the dinner table.  Normally, disciples would have been the ones serving their master, but Jesus’ behavior is different in order to show his disciples how his Kingdom has turned social norms upside down.  And, he is preparing them for the greatest dinner of all.

 

For this is also the night that Jesus institutes the Eucharist, the meal we share as the family of God in remembrance of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross.  That night Jesus and the disciples shared the Passover meal as the first family of the new Kingdom of God; this meal remembers the most important event in Jewish history, the Exodus from Egypt.  Many Jews of the first century were waiting for a Messiah who would lead a military and political takeover of Israel and reclaim it from Rome; they envisioned a second exodus.  Bread and wine play a significant role in the Passover meal, and during the Passover meal, unleavened bread and wine is consumed.  The unleavened bread is called “the bread of affliction” to remind the Israelites of their suffering in Egypt and to remember how they left in such a hurry that there was no time to let the yeast rise before baking. There are five cups of wine integral to the Passover meal. There is varied interpretation, but generally, the first four cups correspond to the four terms God used to describe how he would deliver Israel from Egypt (Exod. 6:6-8)—literally, they are cups of salvation. The fifth cup of wine is left at the place set for Elijah, who it was hoped would return to announce the coming of the Messiah. Jesus connected for his disciples the hope for a second Exodus to the deliverance they would yet experience in his body’s death and resurrection.

 

The church continues these practices today on Maundy Thursday. The foot washing after the reading of the Gospel and the sermon was a common practice by the fourth century. Traditionally, the leader of the church washes the feet of twelve people on this day. Finally, this is the last Eucharist meal consecrated until Easter Vigil. The priest consecrates elements for this service and enough bread for reserve Eucharist on Good Friday. Customarily, Maundy Thursday extends into an all night prayer vigil, commemorating Jesus’ request that his disciples stay up praying with him in the Garden of Gethsemane before his arrest.

 

WHAT YOU SEE & WHAT YOU HEAR

WASHING EACH OTHER’S FEET: We wash each other’s feet to reenact the same servanthood that Jesus took on for his disciples, as told in John 13. Even as King and God, Jesus stooped down to do the dirtiest and lowliest of duties for his disciples. As Jesus’ followers, we do the same for one another because this is how Jesus modeled servant love.  (You may choose not to participate in the foot washing)

STRIPPING OF THE ALTAR: We strip the altar of all worship elements and wash it with water. The symbols of Christ’s presence in Communion are removed as a reminder of how Christ was stripped and exposed by the soldiers before his crucifixion and also how his body was washed and prepared for burial by the women.

SHROUDING OF CROSS AND LOWERING BANNERS: We fast with our eyes through these visual cues of the somber pilgrimage into the last hours of Jesus’ life and his crucifixion.

RESERVED ELEMENTS: The priest blesses extra Communion bread on Maundy Thursday, which is meant to be consumed during Communion on Good Friday. Maundy Thursday through Easter Sunday is technically one long service, known as the “Triduum,” (The Three Days) with no formal processionals or recessionals.

 

DEVOTIONAL

The Maundy Thursday service invites us to allow Jesus into our whole lives. Jesus shows his tender love for us through the vulnerability of washing our feet. Jesus washes us of our sin through his broken body and his blood spilled out on the cross through the sacrament of Communion. This service is intensely embodied—we are invited to see, hear, and feel Jesus with us. In the midst of a worship service it feels both bizarre and startlingly vulnerable to strip off our shoes and socks and place our feet in a basin of water. The foot washing portion of the service forces us to be exposed and vulnerable. It is in that place that we can receive healing and the fullness of the Lord Jesus’ love for us. In the Gospel reading for this service, the disciple Peter is indignant when Jesus asks to wash his feet. Either Peter does not want his Lord to stoop to such a lowly place, or he does not want to show Jesus his dirty feet (or both!). How easy it is to sympathize with Peter in this moment. But instead of appreciating Peter’s concern for him, Jesus says, “If I do not wash you, you have no share with me” (John 13:8). Jesus displays his incredible humility and the fullness of his humanity—he is not above us or our bodies. Jesus became one of us, and a servant to us, in order that he might bring us into full relationship with God the Father—that we might share eternal life with him. Jesus’ servanthood, seen in the washing of feet, is then fully realized in his death on the cross.

 

YOUR RESPONSE

Is it more difficult for you to allow someone to wash your feet, or for you to wash the feet of someone else? Why?

How might the Lord want to minister to you during that moment?

What stands out to you most about this service?

 

Material used with permission from: © 2016 Church of the Resurrection. All rights reserved. 935 W. Union Ave. Wheaton, IL 60187 churchrez.org Editor: Meghan Robins

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