Hello All – welcome to a new week on the Blog!
Hey – it was great to hear Kelly speak yesterday of her Orthodox Easter experience there in the studio. I did not know there was a Greek community in South Bend…
But yes indeed, over here in Jerusalem the somber spirit of Christ crucified and laid in the tomb broke with the centuries old traditions of bells ringing, parade marching, and loud proclamations that Christ is Risen!
As I have been saying, the city was packed with people. Just walk down the streets and you hear the many languages and see the different peoples. This can be colorful as many African pilgrims come with their traditional wear. In fact I was so pleased to see a large group of perhaps 80 pilgrims from Ethiopia! In their distinctive linen wraps they were making their way outside of Zion Gate on the way to visiting the Church of the Upper Room, a place thought by many to be that of the first meeting place of the Church after Jesus' death and resurrection.
As I have been out and about today I have witnessed groups of people leaving with their suitcases and flight bags. In a way – is it wrong to also say that one's pilgrimage begins after they leave the Holy Land?
We know the New Testament tells us that we are pilgrims as we wander through this world knowing that God is faithful in what He says – do you remember what He told Mary Magdalene in the Garden when she first met Him outside the tomb? Or what he told His disciples about the future? That He is going away to prepare a new heaven and a new earth… and one day He's going to come back!
As much as this city of Jerusalem testifies to Christ's resurrection it also proclaims His return… that Easter joy celebrated (twice here in Jerusalem) will be the sound when He returns with all His glory and with exclamation to the different peoples of the earth!
Halleluiah – Lord come.