This is the day the Lord has made!

We will rejoice and be glad in it!

St Mark’s Easter Sunday Worship 4th April 2021


Video: Easter is coming

Psalm: based on Psalm 118 and 30


This is the day the Lord has made!

We will rejoice, and be glad in it!


The Lord is our strength and our song; he has become our victory!

You are our God, and we will praise you;

You are our God, and we will exalt you.


Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good!

His faithful love endures forever!


The stone rejected by the builders has now become the cornerstone.

This is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous to see!


This is the day the Lord has made!

We will rejoice and be glad in it!


You have turned our mourning into dancing!

You have taken away our funeral clothes

and re-clothed us in joy,

so that our whole being—body, mind and soul—

might sing praise to you and not be silent.


O Lord, our Lord, we will give thanks to you forever!


Song: Alleluia, Alleluia


Welcome and Notices:


Prayerful Reflection:

Let us come to Christ the risen Lord. He has died and rose again for us to reconcile us to God and to one another so that we may be the people of resurrection for new beginnings, for hope enduring. By his resurrection love, let us be transformed. How does the risen Lord call you to be a person of resurrection hope?


Once eclipsed by the tomb

Light rolls away the stone

From darkness into light

From death to life

Christ is risen

A witness of the light-filled tomb

A witness of the light-filled you?



Resurrection starts
with the cry of grief,
an empty place,
a familiar voice.

It’s tiny…
like the fingers of a newborn.
Seemingly insignificant…
like the grain that falls on soil.
Often overlooked…
like the leaf bud on the tree.

Christ has risen.

Waiting for us to take notice.

Christ has risen.

Waiting for us to respond.

Christ has risen.

Christ has risen indeed!

Christ is Risen

He is risen indeed!


Greet one another with the words: “Christ is risen”


Prayer for others


Song: Millennium Prayer   [The offering will be brought up]


Offering Prayer


Song: He Came Singing Love

John 20:1-18

Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the tomb. 2So she ran and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.” 3Then Peter and the other disciple set out and went toward the tomb. 4The two were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first. 5He bent down to look in and saw the linen wrappings lying there, but he did not go in. 6Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb. He saw the linen wrappings lying there, 7and the cloth that had been on Jesus’ head, not lying with the linen wrappings but rolled up in a place by itself. 8Then the other disciple, who reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; 9for as yet they did not understand the scripture, that he must rise from the dead. 10Then the disciples returned to their homes.

11But Mary stood weeping outside the tomb. As she wept, she bent over to look into the tomb; 12and she saw two angels in white, sitting where the body of Jesus had been lying, one at the head and the other at the feet. 13They said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.” 14When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus. 15Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?” Supposing him to be the gardener, she said to him, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.” 16Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him in Hebrew, “Rabbouni!” (which means Teacher). 17Jesus said to her, “Do not hold on to me, because I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and say to them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” 18Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord”; and she told them that he had said these things to her.


I would like to invite you to reflect with me about the Resurrection. I want us to prayerfully think about three questions. For each question please take a moment to honestly answer for yourself.


What do you know about the Resurrection?

What do you understand about the Resurrection?

What does the Resurrection mean to you?


Sometimes when we are familiar with what we know.  Often we may know about it but not understand it. We may know about it and understand it but it may not have any meaning. It might be because we haven’t had the time to think about it prayerfully and let it mull for its meaning to permeate through our whole being. It might be because no one has asked us the right question. It might be because, God forbid, we were pressured into accepting it for what it is, and, God forbid, we pretend that it is meaningful to us. It is easy to just put it into a neat statement and recite it but it remains shallow. It requires us of our heart and mind and soul if we put flesh and bone to Resurrection.


Mary sees what is in front of her. She makes her mind up, she quickly puts two and two together, and concludes “they have taken the Lord out of the tomb.” She assumes that Jesus’ body has been taken. There is an element of being dealt unfairly here. The action of taking here is understood to be aggressive and forceful. Who’s they? We don’t know. Who’s they? I wonder whether Mary knows. Has she had the time to ask herself, “who do I mean by they?” I wonder whether we do this sometimes too. We see what we see and quickly make up our mind and judge. We believe we are objective observers able to judge. But are we?


I find it intriguing that later on the reading, the very language Mary used for “them” she uses it for herself. Talking to the person she presumes to be the gardener, she says: “They have taken away my Lord…If you have carried him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.” I wonder whether there is something in this. I wonder whether her heart has been revealed. She presumes someone has taken him away, she feels she’s been unfairly dealt with, she feels like a victim, because she feels possessive of her Lord, Jesus is hers not theirs. She is no objective observer, just like us.


Then comes Peter and the disciple we presume to be John. At the news reported to them by Mary Magdalene, Peter and John run to the tomb. I wonder what went through their minds. Did they doubt Mary? Did they not trust her? I wonder whether it is something else altogether. I wonder whether perhaps they wanted to see the truth for themselves. They wanted to see the truth for themselves. When they did, Peter and John came to a different conclusion. They see the funeral linen wrappings. They even notice with acuity the importance of the fact that the cloth on Jesus’ head was placed not with the linen but separately laid by itself. They see the evidence of a reasonable doubt that doesn’t meet the burden of proof of Mary’s claim. There is doubt to the claim that emptiness of the tomb is evidence of foul play. Of course, then this leaves room for the possibility of the resurrection, it cannot be ruled out. They saw the truth and they believed. Perhaps Peter and John are the models of our faith – objective observers. Interestingly, though, it says that they did not understand. The truth did not permeate through their being, truth has not yet put on flesh and bone. It remains meaningless to them. They return home.


In contrast to Peter and John, who return home, Mary remains. Convinced of her conclusion, Mary grieves by the tomb – they have taken him away from her. We might judge Mary to be the foolish one and be critical of her. Let’s not be judgmental. Let us observe. What’s intriguing is that though she is quick to make conclusion and she is possessive, in spite of this, she remains. In remaining, Mary witnesses resurrection life in the crucified Jesus raised. Mary is not merely a witness of evidence of Resurrection, Mary is a witness of the truth of Resurrection, truth that has flesh and bone.  She has seen the Lord. She is the testimony of the truth of Resurrection, that Love is stronger, Love defeats death, the Lord is raised to life, Jesus is alive.


What do you know about the Resurrection? What do you understand about it? What does it mean to you? Are we, like Mary, so convinced of one or the other? Are we, like Peter and John, content with what we know, yet it remains meaningless? May we remain until we see the Lord. For when we see the Lord of Resurrection, his light shall fill us and permeate through our whole being so that truth of Resurrection has flesh and bone in this world. Let us, the people of the Resurrection, live for love convinced that love has won. Let us love, convinced that there is no life, other than life of love. Yes, Jesus paid the ultimate price of life, wholly committed to love, in the world that refuses God’s loving will, yet he has been raised to life. Yes, the lord of love in the flesh and bone, was killed for being love in the world that refuses love, yet love overcame death and all its minions that leads us to death. Yes, it seems as if might makes right, power is superior to compassion, and despair is stronger than hope, that God loves the world is a lie, Money is God, and the one who dies with the most toys wins, yet love is raised to life, the truth of love triumphant is embodied forever for us to see in Jesus and his people wholly committed to love for God so loves the world.

Responsive Prayer:

When our faith
stands at the grave,
for a stone that’s rolled away,
forgive us.

When our faith
is short of
though the truth is there to see,
forgive us.

When our faith,
beset by doubt, sees
no further
than an empty tomb today,
forgive us.

Bring to mind
the cry of Mary,
‘I have seen the Lord!’
Grant us faith to believe!


Song: Christ is Alive!

Holy Communion:

So we come to the Lord’s Table where we share in the gifts of God in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ risen and alive.


The Resurrection has begun! The Day of Celebration is here!


We gather at the table to share in the Banquet of Life!

Here we meet all who share with us the hope for a brighter future!

All who wish to follow The Way of Life are welcome to eat and drink at God’s table.

Let us eat together.


Christ is Risen!

He is Risen Indeed!

We should give thanks!

Thanks and praise to the One who brings life!


Gracious God,

we sing praises for the wonder of an empty tomb,

we give thanks for the gifts of life, of life that breaks the bonds of death.


As people of faith we remember all those who lived a resurrection life.

People like Moses and Miriam, leading their people to freedom; like Sarah and Abraham, seeking a new life in a strange land; like Peter and Mary, proclaiming an empty tomb and life beyond the cross.

We remember these and many others, named and unnamed, who have embraced Your life, Your hope, and await your return.

And we trust that in remembering and retelling their stories, we too can take the leap into New Life of Christ’s Resurrection.


We especially remember Jesus, your Son.

Jesus, Child of Mary.

Born of a woman, he grew to adulthood among people who struggled daily for life.

Baptized by John, he embraced the life to which You called him.

He taught and preached a vision of a world where all divisions were broken down, where all had what they needed for abundant life, where the Reign of God was as real on earth as in heaven.

And though the powerful in his world fought back, he stood strong.

When offered a chance to take the easy way he overcame his own fear and instead prayed “yet Thy will be done”.

Even though they put him to death you raised him to life, vindicating his vision and bringing hope and healing to the world.


It is Jesus, God in flesh, the Risen Christ,

who joins us together as a community of broken but hopeful believers:

loving what he loved

living what he taught, and

striving to be his faithful resurrection people

in our time and place.

In this meal we remember Jesus, his promises,

and the price he paid for who he was, what he said, and what he did.


On the night before Jesus died,

he took a loaf of bread,

gave thanks, broke it, and said,

“Take and eat, whenever you do this, remember me.”

After supper, Jesus took the cup, and poured, saying,

“This is the new covenant, remember me.”


God of Life, in the beginning your Spirit hovered over the water, calling forth life, creating and inspiring.

Send Your Spirit upon we who gather to share this meal, infuse this bread and this juice with the Spirit’s power,

As we eat and drink my we feel the power of Life Triumphant pulse in our veins, the fire of hope blaze in our hearts, and the joy of the Empty tomb dance in our souls.


And so we break the bread and pour the cup and we remember with hope.

On this Easter Day we share in the Banquet of Freedom to celebrate Life Victorious!


The body of Christ,

the bread of life.

The lifeblood of Christ,

the cup of blessing.

The gifts of God for the people of God,

Thanks be to God!


Prayer after Communion:

Thank you, O Christ, for this feast of life.

We are fed by your love;

we are strengthened by your life.

We are sent forth into this world to live your way and share your joy.

We are now commissioned to:

feed as we have been fed,

forgive as we have been forgiven,

love as we have been loved.

Thanks be to God.



Song: Yours Be The Glory  


Passing of the Peace of Christ: “Peace of Christ be with you”


Song of Sending: We Shall Go Out With Hope Of Resurrection     



The Grace of our Lord, Jesus Christ,

the love of God

and the communion of the Holy Spirit,

be with us all

now and for evermore. Amen.