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  • Writer's pictureMemorial Fernandina

One of the things I love most about the Bible is how God’s Spirit can breathe new life and fresh inspiration into even the most familiar passages and verses.

 

Last week, I started reading through the Acts of the Apostles again. I don’t know how many times I have read through or studied this book of the Bible in the past, but I would certainly feel safe in describing it as one of the ones I know “like the back of my hand.” As I started to read the opening chapters I wasn’t reading anything new, but still God made a way so that familiar, well-known words became a source of refreshment.

 

In Acts 3:14-15, Peter is addressing the crowd who have just witnessed the healing of the lame man at the Beautiful Gate of the temple. He boldly reminds them that they were the very same ones who rejected Jesus Christ and brought about his crucifixion. “You killed the Author of Life” he says “whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses.”

 

Those five little words I typed in bold caught my attention - Peter stating that he and his friends were witnesses to the events of both Good Friday AND Easter Sunday; witnesses to Christ’s passion and resurrection.

 

It struck me that I am a witness to those things too. I’m a witness to the Risen Christ and the power of his great love to heal, save, restore, and transform a life. And you are witnesses too!

 

As we continue in the season of Easter, reading Bishop Berlin’s Book, The Third Day, and learning from the lives of the very first witnesses to the resurrection, may we all be renewed as we seek to live boldly as witnesses of the new life we have found in the Risen Christ. I’ll see you on Sunday!


Blessings!

Pastor Charlie

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  • Writer's pictureMemorial Fernandina

Eastertide Greetings Memorial Family – Now if you’re wondering at me sending you Eastertide Greetings, I’m happy to satisfy your curiosity.  As a Resurrection/Easter people, we celebrate Easter every day, but that season between Easter Sunday and Pentecost Sunday is called Eastertide, and it’s a season of focusing on the meaning of the Resurrection for our lives. 


Here at Memorial, we are all about deepening our discipleship and growing closer to God.  So, we’ve got lots of opportunities for you to take the joy, wonder and call from God to come nearer and live that call out with several classes being offered in April.  A new sermon series begins this Sunday based on Bishop Tom Berlin’s book “The Third Day”.   A Bible study class using that book will be led by Chris Twiggs that will focus on the experiences of the first Resurrection witnesses and how their experiences relate to your own.  Want to grow your prayer life?  Pastor Charlie and Dr. Anna Wright will show you lots of ways to do just that with a class on Prayer.  And…I’m excited to offer a third class focused on deepening and broadening your understanding of our Christian and Methodist Roots.  This class will be limited to 12 participants, because its format is conversational around questions lots of people have about the Bible, what Methodists believe and the foundational concepts of the Christian faith.  It’s everything you always wanted to know about what we believe practice and why but were afraid to ask!


 Now, I hope you will pray about one of these classes that the Holy Spirit is guiding you to experience to help you becoming a more deeply rooted disciple of Jesus.  And…if you’re someone who’s been visiting Memorial and are thinking about joining the “Love Shows Up” people, a New Members Class is also beginning this month.  Whew!  That’s a lot!  But don’t be overwhelmed now – just trust the Holy Spirit to direct your steps, and don’t be shy about calling Pastor Charlie or me if you need more information to help you choose what’s right for you to take the good news of the Resurrection and apply it to your own faith journey.  But, if you’re ready to decide now, you can go to mumconline.com/signup and sign up.  Don’t hesitate, participate!


Blessings!

Pastor Alyce

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  • Writer's pictureMemorial Fernandina


Each year on Good Friday, I post the words of an apropos hymn or song for the day - one centered on the cross of Christ. My favorite of these hymns was first published by Charles Wesley in 1769 in a collection called Short Hymns on Selected Passages of the Holy Scriptures - Vol. 2.”  Charles had been reading John 19:30, where Jesus speaks his last words from the cross saying: “It is finished” and he was inspired to write these words:



'Tis finished! the Messiah dies,

Cut off for sins, but not His own!

Accomplish'd is the sacrifice,

The great redeeming work is done;

Finish'd the first transgression is,

And purg'd the guilt of actual sin,

And everlasting righteousness

Is now to all the world brought in.


'Tis finish'd, all my guilt and pain,

I want no sacrifice beside,

For me, for me, the Lamb is slain.

And I am more than justified;

Sin, death, and hell are now subdued,

All grace is now to sinners given,

And, lo, I plead th' atoning blood,

For pardon, holiness, and heaven.

 

In this Good Friday Pastor’s note, I want to invite you to sit with these words for a moment. Read them, take them in, and let what they are saying find a resting place in your heart. Christ’s death on the cross means God’s great redeeming work IS done. Everlasting righteousness IS now to all the world brought in. All grace IS now to sinners given. This is such good news!

 

The glory of Easter Sunday is not far away, but we ought not to skip over Good Friday to get there. Today, it is important that we spend time at the cross and consider once more the work that was accomplished there.  I hope you will join with us for our Good Friday service this evening at 6:00pm in the Sanctuary. And I also invite you to our Easter Sunday services, when we celebrate Christ’s resurrection and proclaim once more the good news that Christ’s is a victory to be shared with the world. It’s going to be a great time together and I can’t wait to see you there!


Blessings!

Pastor Charlie

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