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Easter Sunday, 2018: Let's Put Our Bells On

by Father Jadon

"I'll be there with bells on."   It's one of those phrases that entered into usage without leaving conclusive evidence of its origin.  All historians can say for sure is that the response is used by people when they mean to convey a sense of excitement about taking part in something.  That's certainly how I remember hearing the phrase as a child.  I remember my mother and her sisters using it a lot, especially my Aunt Ruth, as they responded with joy to invitations from one another.  They always seemed genuinely excited by opportunities to get together.

Last year I introduced a tradition some churches have of inviting people to bring bells with them to Easter services, to ring in response to our Easter acclamation: “The Lord is Risen!” Among my own preparations for our Easter celebration is the annual polishing of a special family bell that has called several generations to table.  When I ring it now I remember hearing this bell as a child when, upon hearing it, I would drop whatever I was doing and rush to the holiday table with excitement. I invite you to bring a bell (or a joyful noisemaker of any kind) to Easter services this year and/or in years to come!

Whether you bring an actual bell with you or not, the predominant intention we bring with us to church on Easter, and on every Sunday —each one a "mini Easter"—is what enlivens and characterizes our gathering together. If we bring joy and delight, that is what will be shared and multiplied. That is what will ring out and characterize us as a community. The ancient Greek word we use for this gathering, Eucharist, means "Thanksgiving." This is the primary intention Christians have sought to characterize their gatherings in response to Christ's Resurrection from the very beginning. But what else are we bringing? How intentional are we being about what we are choosing to magnify and carry with us from Sunday to Sunday and what we are choosing to release and let go? As the fifty-day season of Easter begins, may we embrace this season as a time to renew our sense of excitement and joy as we gather together.  Brothers and sisters in Christ, let's put our bells on, for one another.

Last Published: March 29, 2018 12:47 PM
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