April 2018 – Rev. Diane Dowgiert
The season of Spring is an assertion of the opinion that the world must have new life. Green shoots break through brown earth, buds burst forth with fragrance and color, eggs hatch to release a new generation; a yearly cycle of rebirth and renewal. It is an exciting time of year, filled with hope and ripe with possibility.
Spring brings with it the celebrations of Passover and Easter. Jews commemorate Passover by retelling the story of the Israelites escape from bondage in Egypt. It is a celebration of freedom. That the story is told every year is a reminder that freedom is not something that is won once and for all. It must be worked for continually.
Christians celebrate Easter by retelling the story of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Taken more metaphorically than literally, resurrection speaks to the reality that life constantly renews itself. The resurrection is an invitation into a new life, new ways of living into the possibilities of an earth made fair and all her people one.
One of my favorite poems, written by Wendell Berry, is titled, Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front. My favorite line of the poem is the last one: practice resurrection. Like freedom, resurrection is not achieved once and for all. It takes practice and awareness – not falling back into old habits of perpetuating systems of exploitation and oppression, persecuting ourselves and others, forgetting that it is possible to live differently.
In this congregation, I have witnessed the ways you practice resurrection, bringing new life to the community you create together – attentive to the covenant that holds you in relationship and committed to a mission of connection, care, and community. In this season of renewal, may the seeds so faithfully planted yield a fruitful harvest in the seasons to come.
Yours in the interim,