I’m worried. I’m worried I’ve lost Easter. I’m worried we’ve lost Easter.
Today, apparently, as it’s Maundy Thursday, the Pope is going to wash the feet of refugees. I was moved by that – think about where those feet have walked, think about what those people have seen. There can’t be many more groups as dehumanised and othered as refugees, and do I’m glad the Pope is going to be their servant. It’s a Christlike attitude, one I need to take root in my own hard heart.
But our churches are now so big. The contemporary Christian book deals and recording contracts are so lucrative. Look at our lighting rigs, our sound system, the artisan coffee bars in our foyers. Excellence is something to strive for, but are we using Maundy Thursday metrics? Do we kneel and wash feet every day, or as part of a one-day ritual.
There was a lot of heat a few months ago about “the War on Christmas”. I’m not sure there’s a comparable secular assault on Easter, but maybe that’s because we’re looking for the wrong battle. If Easter is about servanthood and compassion, grace and sacrifice, then the battle is against anything that works counter to those. The desire for power and the promotion of prejudice, the chains of legalism and a willingness to exploit the weak… These are some of the sins that worm their way into the church. These are the things from which we need to reclaim Easter.
Maybe we need to save Easter from ourselves.