Dear Easter People,
He is Risen! Hallelujah! As we enter into the beginning week of the celebration of the Great 50 Days of Easter, we do so still overwhelmed by the beautiful Holy Week we experienced. Eight services, six of which were totally new, both outside and live streamed allowed thousands of people to attend throughout the week both on campus and online.
- A Palm Sunday worship service with live animals
- An outdoor lighted prayer labyrinth
- A Good Friday walk–through experience
- A stadium filled with music and arts for Easter
Each offering was creative, deeply spiritually moving and powerful helping us take The Hero’s Journey with Jesus all the way into Jerusalem, to the Upper Room, toward the cross, tomb and toward Galilee with new insight. Here are just a few pictures of this amazing week, and a special behind the scenes look at Easter rehearsal (drone video by Tommy Orndorf).
It was beautiful to begin to see people face to face and connect in fellowship as we gathered safely to worship in different ways. I want to personally thank our entire staff and the hundreds of St. Lukers who volunteered to host, collect offering, register, dance, sing, play instruments, create art and construct scenic design, and use technical expertise to bring everything to life. New people were reached through your passion and time offered; St. Lukers reengaged as 30 new partners joined the church with 4 adults being baptized for the first time. Hallelujah – Christ is alive and working through our congregation. What a gift to be a part of Revealing the Kingdom of God happening in our corner of Orlando.
This week we begin a new series to help us dig deeper into our yearlong theme of Living the Story as we come alive and find our place as the Hero’s sidekicks. Each week we will focus on particular people in the New Testament who came alongside Jesus to use their gifts to continue to develop the plot line of love and resurrection He wrote with Easter Sunday. We will also share about the spiritual gifts those persons might have been given by the Holy Spirit and the ways those gifts are used.
We live the story of God’s Resurrection best when we:
- LEARN the story of God and ourselves
- ENGAGE the story in our everyday lives
- LISTEN to the way others experience God and their story
- ECHO the story through our witness and service
This is a new day, and the perfect time to get into this discipleship rhythm. We will be helping St. Lukers of all ages move through this rhythm focusing on the same Scripture, teachings, dialogue and ways to serve throughout the entire year. Now is a great time to start a new pattern of your faith journey!
- LEARN with Pastor Bill and all your St. Luke’s clergy as we engage the story through Scripture and theology on Wednesday nights at 6:30 p.m. (Can’t watch live? Register anyway so you’ll receive a link to the weekly recording). Click here to sign up. Also check out children’s and youth programming on Wednesdays!
- ENGAGE the story on Sunday morning during worship, making the story practical to our everyday life. Click here to register for on-campus worship.
- LISTEN to the story comes alive in others, expanding your experience through a Life Together group for weekly conversation. Click here to learn more and jump into a Life Together group.
ECHO this series by exploring various volunteer opportunities on campus and in our community. Click here to learn more and get involved.
I can’t wait to celebrate these 50 days of Easter with you as we head toward the powerful day of Pentecost. See U Sunday in worship as we Engage the story of Stephen from Acts 6 and 7.
Grace and peace,