St. Luke's United Methodist Church

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4851 S. Apopka-Vineland Road
Orlando, FL 32819
407.876.4991

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Blog Post from Pastor Jenn-April 9, 2020

Posted on April 9, 2020 at 9:13 am in .

Dear Holy Week Sojourners,

Today we begin what is known as the Great Triduum, or Three Days, that lead to Easter. We have a rich tradition at St. Luke’s of worshipping together on Holy Thursday led by our youth, a Good Friday service of light to darkness, and celebrating a glorious Easter morning. Each service is always deeply moving, something many of us consider the highlight of our year. It is hard to imagine we will not gather on our campus together and I know each of us is missing a little something not being together to pass the peace, sing, and celebrate these days on campus.

However, even though we miss one another physically, many of you have shared that spiritually and emotionally, you feel more connected than ever with your St. Luke’s family. We have found ways to connect, pray together, worship, and create community while attending classes virtually and sharing prayers and breathing space online. Phone trees and letter writing has come back in fashion. Who knew we could find community in new and old ways in the midst of quarantine? The Holy Spirit is at work creating new ways for us to be and define “church” with the same power as the early church.

This means these Three Days will be even more significant than we could have imagined. I pray you intentionally make space and time to join us for these worship services as we journey to Easter. We will gather online for worship Thursday and Friday at 7:30 p.m. and hold a special conversation on Saturday at 7:30 p.m.

  • Holy Thursday gather with us over your own meal, leaving a chair for Jesus. Make sure you have crackers or bread; juice or drink of choice for communion as well as lotion for a special hand-washing moment.
  • Good Friday find eight candles and worship with us in candlelight as we move together from light to darkness.
  • Holy Saturday join us clergy in candid conversations with some of our mental health counselors as we share vulnerably how to cope in dark times. We will invite you to hear our hearts and answer your questions about sustaining personal care during this time.

Easter Sunday join us at 9:30 a.m. online as we celebrate Resurrection together. We have incredible music planned with some powerful surprises to help you celebrate new life, rolled away stones, empty tombs, and a Risen Savior. Make sure to have your bells ready (even if it’s an app on your phone) for the end of worship, and be ready to take a video to send of your family Easter Bell ringing.

Now some more uplifting news to share. First, we have two big birthdays to celebrate in our congregation. You may not realize it, but we have six generations active in our congregation. Last week, Carter Williams turned 94 and next week Dave Risher turns 99! Happy Birthday to two of our active worshippers and volunteers on this incredible milestone!! AND Lucille Ellison, who is 102 and joined St. Luke’s in 1995, was featured in the Washington Post this week, sharing her tenacity and inspiring spirit which has seen her through many historic moments like this one.

What a gift to have such wonderful faithful mentors, showing us the way and reminding us that we will make it through and the sun is gonna shine! Keep the faith and keep showing how to keep our eyes on Jesus, Lucille! We love you all!

Can’t wait to travel with you and Jesus this week.

Grace and Peace,

Jenn.

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