Virtual Service – Easter Sunday – April 17, 2022

2:00 pm

April 17, 2022

Welcome to virtual church!

Today’s service will be offered in 2 formats – video and text.

• View the video below
• download and print the service from this document – link

For the latest news and updates from Walton, please check our Facebook page, Instagram and website. Subscribe to our YouTube channel for videos of service, the choirs and more!

Please contact office@waltonmemorial.com if you would like to be added to our email list.

 


Land Acknowledgement

As we gather today on these treaty lands, we are in solidarity with Indigenous brothers and sisters to honour and respect the four directions, lands, waters, plants, animals and ancestors that walked before us, and all of the wonderful elements of creation that exist. We acknowledge and thank the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation for being stewards of this traditional territory.

Hallelujah Chorus

https://youtu.be/-1qntalpTZo

Welcome

Jim: Jesus Is Risen! Hallelujah!

Val:  Good Morning and welcome to Walton’s Hybrid Easter Service, we are so happy you are joining us this morning.

Jim: Wasn’t that so inspirational Val?

Val:   Yes Jim it leaves me speechless

Jim: That in itself is a miracle. Ha,ha..

Val:  Do you know why we stand up for the Hallelujah Chorus?

Jim: Well King George the second, during the chorus at the Messiah 1743 premiere, began the custom and tradition that an earthly King stood for the heavenly King.

Val: Wow,  I didn’t know that, but it helps me understand the scripture from Palm Sunday a little better. You know when Jesus says even the rocks themselves would cry out;  that is how I feel about the Hallelujah Chorus. I just can’t help but joining in to sing, I sing every part well which ever notes I can hit,  but I don’t care,  it just makes me want to sing, to celebrate Jesus has risen!

Jim:  Hallelujah!

Easter Affirmation

One:When Mary fled in grief from the empty tomb and ran into new life and hope – it was Easter day.

All:     Peter pledged his love three times to Jesus, and erased his three denials – it was Easter day.

One:When Thomas witnessed the wounds of Jesus and saw truth standing before him – it was Easter day.

All:When Paul was blinded by the light and saw the path Jesus wanted him to take – it was Easter day.

One:When the hungry are fed at the table, nourished and fulfilled with abundant joy -it is Easter day.

All:When the outsider is accepted and included, and difference is cherished and nurtured – it is Easter day.

One:When the stranger is welcomed in community, and the lonely are restored to relationship – it is Easter day.

All:When we affirm we are loved and forgiven and share that grace with those around us – it is Easter day. Hallelujah, Amen!

Hymn:  “Jesus Christ is Risen Today”  vs. 1 & 4155VU

Opening Prayer (inspired by John 20:19-31)

Lord Jesus Christ, on this Easter morning the light of your love shines! Your light has come into the world, and neither darkness, nor evil, nor even death itself could overcome it.

And we, like Mary,  like the disciples, who have been there with you through Holy Week and this first Easter morning, have been made witnesses to the resurrection story: wondering, bewildered, hoping, rejoicing….and sometimes doubting.

It is not always easy to believe with our minds and trust with our hearts.

Loving Christ, open the eyes of our faith that we may behold the work of your salvation. Open our minds and hearts to receive you, Lord: your resurrection glory, your light everlasting. May this time of worship, reflection and celebration be a worthy response to your love and your sacrifice for us. Amen.

(adapted on Literature & Liturgy) 

The Lord’s  Prayer

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us, and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.  For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, forever and ever. Amen.

Youth Story “The Resurrection Cross”

We started a beautiful tradition at Walton several years ago, inspired by a church in Scotland. Our empty, barren, wooden Good Friday cross gets transformed by Walton’s children on Easter Sunday. It gets covered in bright colourful flowers, changing from a symbol of death to one of life, rebirth, fresh starts, happiness, and hope.

Just like the once barren trees and empty gardens around us are now bursting with new life, budding leaves and opening flowers, Easter transforms us from our cold, grey, Lenten selves with new energy, new hope, new life.

Our Sunday School kids have been busy down in Bronte Hall this morning. Let’s welcome this symbol of Easter hope that they have been working on. May the bright spirit of these children – their laughter, their smiles, their energy, their enthusiasm – fill you with the joy of Easter this morning.

(The flowered cross is carried into the sanctuary. The cross is placed at the front of the church)

Children’s Song:  “Halle, Halle, Hallelujah!”958VU

Trio:  Ault Sisters  “Amazing Grace/My Chains are Gone”

Scripture Reading:  Luke 24:1-12

The Resurrection of Jesus

But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they came to the tomb, taking the spices that they had prepared.  They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they went in, they did not find the body.

While they were perplexed about this, suddenly two men in dazzling clothes stood beside them. The women were terrified and bowed their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen. Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee,  that the Son of Man must be handed over to sinners, and be crucified, and on the third day rise again.”

Then they remembered his words, and returning from the tomb, they told all this to the eleven and to all the rest.

Now it was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the other women with them who told this to the apostles. But these words seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them.

But Peter got up and ran to the tomb; stooping and looking in, he saw the linen cloths by themselves; then he went home, amazed at what had happened.

Scripture Response: “Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Give Thanks”179VU

 

Morning Message:  “Crying Stones #2”  Rev. Jim Gill

I am sure most of us live in homes whose foundation walls are made of either concrete block or poured concrete. Our spiritual home here at Walton is different, at least in this historically-designated sanctuary built in 1912. We are held up here in the sanctuary by concrete mixed with countless local stones.

Today is the second in my two-part series of Holy Week messages titled, “Crying Stones.” Both last Sunday, Palm Sunday, and today, Easter Sunday, our readings mention stones. A stone, by the way, is something that can be easily moved while a rock cannot.

For the believer, a must-see stop in the present-day city of Jerusalem is the garden tomb, a very old rock-cut tomb. Many believe this may be the tomb in which Jesus’ body was placed after the crucifixion. It certainly is a tomb dated from the time of Jesus and certainly is in the area where his burial would have taken place. The tomb is empty. It provides a visual example of what Jesus’ burial site may have looked like after the stone was rolled away on the day of the resurrection.

In the gospel accounts of Easter, we see those grief-filled women going to anoint the body of Jesus. Anointing the body did not get done on Good Friday, since Jesus was taken off the cross so close to the start of the Sabbath at dusk. The women found what they never expected – the stone had been rolled away. They knew something earth-shattering had occurred. It changed history forever. The Roman official state seal was affixed to the stone that secured the tomb. The seal stood for the power and authority of the Roman Empire. Not only had the stone been rolled away from the entrance, but there was also nobody inside the tomb. They wondered if it was the work of grave robbers. Was this the work of the Romans or Jewish officials?

Jesus did not hide his resurrection in any way. It was not a hushed secret but a public cry out to the world. The tomb was deliberately left as a concrete witness, both open and empty. The stone represented a barrier between the living and the dead.

During the days of Jesus, tombs differed from today’s graves and mausoleums. Jesus was not buried in his own tomb. It was a tomb owned by the wealthy Joseph of Arimathea. The tomb was new and able to be sealed with a rolling stone. Such tombs were commonly hewn out of rock and were sealed with a heavy stone to close the entrance. They were not in the ground, but you had to bend over and walk into them, for they were built into the side of a cliff.

Clearly, rolling such a stone over the entrance to the tomb would require more than one person. Joseph of Arimathea had the assistance of Nicodemus, who was also a follower of Christ. The women were present when Joseph of Arimathea and Nicodemus placed Jesus in the tomb. The women knew the location, as they planned to return after the Sabbath to lovingly anoint the body with things such as myrrh. On that Sunday morning, there was the question of how they would ever roll back the heavy stone to enter the tomb. Maybe the soldiers would help them or someone else in the cemetery who had gone to mourn their loved one?

Miraculously, the women did not have to deal with the question of how they would roll the stone away. When they arrived at the place of Jesus’ burial, “they found the stone rolled away from the tomb.” There was also the undeniable fact of the empty tomb, for no other bodies had ever been buried in the tomb but Jesus’ body. You see, in older tombs, there could be multiple bodies of the same family placed inside over time. Right after the women found that the stone was rolled away, they entered the tomb to find it empty with no trace of Jesus’ body, not even a skeleton. This is crucial, for Jesus was bodily resurrected.

This incredible turn of events shocked the women and left them puzzled. I think most of us would have been stunned in total disbelief. John’s gospel describes Mary being distraught after she found the stone rolled away and Jesus’ body gone, as she mistakenly assumed it was stolen away.

I began my message today by telling you this church sanctuary is supported by a foundation constructed in 1912 of local stones and concrete. I will end by telling you that this Church’s real foundation is the stone that was rolled away that first Easter. The stone that was rolled away cries out as the cornerstone of our faith. A cornerstone, we are told, is the first stone set in the construction of a foundation. All other stones will be set in reference to this stone, thus determining the position of the entire structure.

Our faith has as its cornerstone the stone rolled away from the tomb on Easter morning. It cries out as the eternal hope of the resurrection. The stone was no longer needed. If the crucified Jesus was not in the tomb there was no need for the stone. It was discarded to the side of the entrance. Arlene Dery sums it up in this poem.

On day three, here’s what was found;
They couldn’t keep Him in the ground.
So for Christ, to meet his doom,
They blocked the entrance to the tomb.
A rolling stone was put in place,
A seal of wax upon its face.
Roman guards to watch the sight,
Duty-bound, all day and night.
With all power, they had wrought,
With all strength, they had sought,
With all faith, they relied,
On the Cross, he had died.
But when came the dawn of day,
The tomb was empty where he lay.
A mighty angel gave a shout,
‘He’s not here,’ and lest you doubt;
The massive stone was rolled away,
In the grave Christ didn’t stay,
He rose that day in victory,
He conquered death, for you and me.

Solo:  “Because He Lives”  Ron Tidy

 

Prayer of Petition for Easter

Just like your disciples long ago, we peer into the tombs of our hearts.

So many things fill our inner tombs— broken relationships, failed attempts at self-improvement, shame, anger, missed opportunities, debilitating grief.

Lord, some pieces of ourselves feel like they have been dead forever and other things so affect our living that although we breathe, we feel dead within. We lift up to you all that is within us.

When those who came to your tomb looked within, they found two men in dazzling clothes, but couldn’t find you. So often we too go through difficult times and can’t find you. Perhaps we, too, are looking in the wrong places.

You are always with us, but often in ways that defy our expectations. Just as the tomb couldn’t limit you, neither can we.

Open our minds, ears, eyes, and hearts to all the ways that you dwell in our midst. Lord, there is no tomb that you can not break through, including the tombs in our hearts. May we experience your resurrection this year, inside out.

May we experience life in places that we thought were dead. May we experience your reconciliation in relationships that we thought were damaged forever. May we find your peace in things that once gave us anxiety. May we experience healing in the places that have been hurting for too long. May we see your presence in all the times that we always thought we were alone.

As we celebrate the empty tomb, we rejoice that death does not have the final victory,

but rather that life, love, and goodness prevail.

Lord, break open our lives to receive all the love, forgiveness and freedom that You so freely give.

May we allow your resurrection to make a difference in how we live. May we forever live in hope of all that is yet to be. Amen.

(adapted Amy Aspey, Associate Minister at Trinity United Methodist Church in Columbus, Ohio)

Offering of Ourselves, Our Gifts, Our Tithes

God of great gifts: This morning we give you praise, we give you glory, we give you thanks!
With resurrection humming in our hearts, our minds are tuned to your song of peace!
We joyfully present our gifts to you, the offering will now be received.
(adapted Carol Penner, and posted on Leading in Worship)

♥  by secure online payment from your debit or credit card. Click here to go to our donation page to make a single or recurring donation. Multiple funds can be included in one donation by using the “Add Donation” button
♥ by cheque through the mail slot at the Church office entrance or by Canada Post
♥ by Text to Give. Donate securely at any time just by texting a dollar amount to 84321 (eg. $5).  See our Text-to-Give page for more information.
♥ by monthly PAR payments. To sign up contact stuart@waltonmemorial.com

Offering Song: “Lift High the Cross”151VU

 

Offering Prayer

Generous and surprising God, when we thought that death had claimed your only Son, you amazed us with the resurrection. Surprise us again with your ability to turn these humble offerings into gifts that will transform the world

through our witness to your love. We lay our very lives at your feet, O God, knowing that you will use us to proclaim and embody the gospel. Amen.

(written by Laura Jaquith Barlett, and posted on Ministry Matters)

Hymn:  “Thine Is the Glory” Vs. 1 & 2173VU

Benediction

Go forth with renewed hope, trusting in the transforming love of God.
God does not leave things as they are; With God, all things are made new.
All creation responds to God’s presence; The world is alive with possibility.
We open ourselves to this truth; With Christ, we trust our whole lives to this power.
Nothing is beyond the reach of God; Neither evil, nor hardship, nor death.
Christ is risen! He is risen indeed.
(Jeanyne Slettom, from Process and Faith, Claremont School of Theology)


Announcements

• Easter Food Drive – On a recent grocery shopping trip, I came to realize that my dollar was not going as far as I wished. I was there to buy fresh vegetables, like broccoli, celery, lettuce, tomatoes etc. After a few tough weeks of grey skies, and alternating weather of rain, freezing rain and even snow flurries, I had become a ‘couch’ potato(or sloth), watching t.v. and over-snacking.
I decided to ‘get green’ and get healthier. My shopping experience was an eye-opener. If I bought all the vegetables I desired, I’d have to cut my meat budget in half (at least). I ended up buying a veggie platter with a variety of vegetables instead of my original list. I’m only buying for two right now, and I could manage that for now and reconsider for next time.
It made me think…how do families of four or more do this every week? Obviously, some can’t and have to make tough choices, harder than mine. They then consider going to a food bank to feed their families.
My plea today is for all of us to help those families making these tough choices every week for their families. By donating to the Fare Share Food Bank we can help stock the shelves so that these families can get the help they need. Of course, you can bring items to the church on Sunday or throughout the week or you can donate through your Walton envelopes. The money received can be used to purchase fresh fruit and vegetables, fish, meat, eggs, cheese and milk to share with their clients on their next visit.
Every donation helps. Items needed most can be found on their website (www.oakvillefoodbank.com) Please donate throughout April and beyond.
On your behalf, Walton Outreach

• VBS Volunteers Wanted – Calling all adults and university students! We need your help to make our VBS day camps the most fun and exciting week of the summer. We are looking to fill a few key roles on our camp leadership team. Volunteers for these positions should be able to commit to a full 5-day week from July 4-8 and/or July 11-15. Full days are ideal, but some roles can be divided into morning (8:30-12:30) and afternoon (12:30-4:30) shifts. Leaders will work with a team of helpers and will have detailed manuals, training, and support.

Bible Study Leader – Leader delivers age-appropriate lessons and supporting activities based on the VBS theme of the day. Leader is responsible for preparing each day’s materials and supplies, setting up the Bible Study area before lessons and cleaning up after. Lesson plan outlines and suggested activities / games are provided.
Snacktivity Leader – Leader plans, prepares, and serves healthy and fun snacks based around the VBS theme (2 per day). Leader is responsible for stocking and preparing ingredients and supplies needed each day, along with ensuring all snack items meet food allergy restrictions. Leaders should be familiar with safe food handling guidelines and kitchen hygiene and are responsible for set up and cleaning of the kitchen daily. A planning guide with suggested snack ideas is provided.
Games Leaders – Games leaders plan and supervise a variety of high-energy, age-appropriate group games which can be enjoyed outdoors on the front lawn or in the mini gym. Leaders are responsible for preparing each day’s materials and supplies, and setting up and cleaning up the games area each day.
Craft leader – Craft leaders are responsible for planning, preparing, and supervising 2 daily craft activities that fit the VBS theme. Leaders are responsible for sourcing and organizing all materials and supplies, and for daily set up and clean up of the craft area.

High school students and junior leaders stay tuned – we will have lots of volunteer opportunities for you as well!

• Ukraine Relief-Support for our brothers and sisters in Ukraine – If you would like to make a donation for relief for the people of Ukraine, you can do it through your givings account at Walton. No amount will be too small in such dire circumstances and we will be sure to direct your donation carefully through the Canadian Red Cross.

• To donate by credit card – You can click on this Walton link: https://waltonmemorial.churchcenter.com/giving/to/disaster-relief-outreach-ukraine
• You can also text a donation, by sending a text to 84321 with a dollar amount followed by “ukraine” e.g. “$25 ukraine”
• You can also drop a cheque made out to Walton Untied Church with “Ukraine” in the memo line, through the mailbox slot at Walton Church, or sent by Canada Post to Walton Memorial United Church, 2489 Lakeshore Road West, Oakville L6L 1H9. Any donation for Ukraine will be added to your annual givings and will be included in your end of 2022 official tax receipt from Walton.

Thank you in advance for anything you would like to donate. ~ The Walton Outreach Committee

Gift Card Sale – Now’s your chance to “Shop ‘Til You Drop” and support Walton’s Ministry and Mission at the same time, with our Gift Card Sale.
Here’s how it works:
– Many generous businesses and individuals have donated gift cards to the church for local businesses, services, restaurants, and experiences. We have also received a number of discounted tickets for the Stratford Festival to sell as a fundraiser. The church office is selling these cards and tickets at face value, with all proceeds going to support our General Fund, on a first-come, first- served basis.
At each entrance/exit of Walton, there is a paper list of gift cards. Please pick up a copy and take it home if you wish. Read it at your leisure, and select the card(s) or tickets of your choice from the list and contact the church office, Tuesday through Friday to arrange payment and pickup/delivery time, office@waltonmemorial.com or 905-827-1643. It’s that easy! Thank you to our generous donors and purchasers for your support.

The CVITP Committee (Community Volunteer Income Tax Program) will begin making appointments in 2022 for March and April. If you need help filing your return, have a modest income, and a simple tax situation, the Community Volunteer Income Tax Program may be able to help you. For details about the Free Tax Clinic, you can visit the following online page: https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/campaigns/free-tax-help.html or call Ruth at 905-631-6188 or John at  905-869-1484 for further details. Tax assistance will be by appointment only – if we remain on COVID watch, we will operate out of the Walton parking lot, and by phone and by e-mail/internet.  If the closure has been somewhat lifted, we will have you come to Walton masked for an appointment with a tax preparer.

• Children and youth are invited to view this week’s virtual Sunday School lesson online. This week we’re talking about sin and we have some bad news and good news for everyone.

• Sam’s Lady Rose Relish and Sam’s Bread & Butter Pickles (a very limited quantity) are available for purchase at $5.00 each from the church office.

• Mike’s award-winning Marmalade is now available for purchase at $5.00 each from the church office.

• Walton’s prayer chain is open. Confidential prayers requests can be sent to office@waltonmemorial.com

• If you need Rev. Jim for a pastoral emergency, please email him directly at jamescgillwuc@gmail.com.

 


In case you missed it…

Here is Rev. Jim’s mid-week update for Wednesday, April 14th