lutheran

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Service of Darkness

Published March 30, 2013 by Maryanne

Service of Darkness

Last night, accompanied by my husband, I attended my first “Service of Darkness” as a Christian.

It was powerful.

It was done so well that it was easy to let your imagination take over and feel that you were right there, watching Jesus as he died and bled blood and water.

The service began with one of my favorite classical tunes: Gymnopedie No. 1 by Eric Satie (my favorite classical composer).

Prayers were spoken,hymns were sung, the choir performed, bible verses were read and the seven last words of Jesus were read as seven candles were extinguished throughout the service.

The first word: “Father, forgive them.”; Luke 23:32-38: “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”

The second word: “Truly, I say to you …”; Luke 23:39-45: “Today you will be with me in Paradise.”

The third word: “Women, behold, thy Son”; John 19:23-27: “Here is your son. Here is your mother.”

The fourth word: “My God, my God”; Mark 15:23-39: “Why have you forsaken me.”

The fifth word: “I thirst”; John 19:28-29 “I thirst.”

The sixth word: “It is finished.”; John 19:30-37 “It is finished.”

The seventh word: “Father, into your hands …”; Luke 23:44-56 “Into your hands I commend my spirit.”

After the seventh candle was extinguished, you heard the closing of the tomb. And the church was dark.

We adore you, O Christ, we bless you, by your holy cross you have redeemed the whole world.

All left the church in silence.

Thank You For the Service You Do For Our Country!

Published January 22, 2013 by Maryanne

Army truckArmy truck (found via Google search)

Last night in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, I participated in some community volunteer service at a local church.

It’s amazing when you have a bunch of people together all the good you can do, and how fast you can do it! There were several stations set up for all sorts of things that could be done. In two hours, I went to two different stations.

At the first station I helped create packages of food for families. At the second station people were writing letters to those in service and coloring/drawing pictures for them. It was interesting because it made you take a minute to think about things you never think of, like what is the first color stripe of our flag?

I challenged myself and colored a picture of a soldier in an army truck, with the heading, “Thank You for the Service You Do for Our Country.”  I decided to go with several colors to create a camouflage colored truck. Everyone liked my picture and even a little girl pointed out to her father, “Look at the camouflage!”

Love is like a chain reaction. People of all ages, all colors/races, creating together, helping together in order to feed people, to brighten someone’s day. The energy was just so grand. Other tables were sewing pillow cases. There is just so much you can do, in one short evening that went by so fast!

I was sitting next to a lovely woman named Barbara who was writing a letter and was impressed by her artistic printing. My printing is like chicken scratch, I can barely read my own writing and I told her so, adding that it’s probably because of all the years on typing on a computer, I’m just not used to printing on paper anymore.

She said she avoids computers. As a retired nurse, she has no use for them. I was so impressed by this. Just as impressed as I was when I read that Stevie Nicks doesn’t have a cell phone.

A very cool lady, indeed! We had several great conversations. Had I not volunteered, I would have never met her!

After the community service, there was a worship service commemorating Martin Luther King Jr., which was held at Cranford United Methodist Church, Cranford. The church I’ve been going to that I love so much is Calvary Lutheran Church, also in Cranford. The service was sponsored by the Cranford Interfaith Human Relations Committee and the Cranford Clergy Council, so we had our Pastor Carol speak, as well as a priest and a rabbi.

The service was electrifying!

The music director of the church, Joseph Legaspi, sang a traditional spiritual song “Deep River.” He baritone voice was extremely powerful.

At the end of the night Barbara asked for my card to keep in touch and we walked out together. I made another friend and I feel terrific! I got in the car, turned on the radio and a very happy song by The Archies came on, “Sugar, Sugar.”

LIFE IS GOOD!

martin-luther-king-jr-day-L-xGOagM1

“We may have all come on different ships, but we’re in the same boat now.” Martin Luther King Jr.

Between last year and this year, it was my second memorable Martin Luther King Day in a row!

Martin Luther King Day is becoming another favorite holiday!

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