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/ 12 April 2022

Bishop Sarah’s Easter Message 2022 for Clergy, Laity and LDF Staff

The Bishop of London shares a message about the hope that Easter brings in our everyday lives.

‘As we travel through Holy Week together, my thoughts and prayers are with you on that journey from Palm Sunday, through the cross, to the resurrection.

Our Easter hope cannot be separated from the events of Good Friday. Hope is not something which depends for its flourishing on good and easy times: it is sometimes rooted in the most difficult of soils.

Hope is tenacious. It’s like a hardy alpine plant – or a seed which survives in the driest of desert conditions, eventually to burst into colour above the surface. When we hope for something, we are recognising that something of what is to come is already here. That no matter how challenging or bruising life is, no matter how tired and fragile we are, no matter how precarious our mental or physical health, God’s love and compassion are utterly reliable, always there, wrapping us in the tightest and tenderest embrace.

We know that Good Friday is inevitable.  We know it because we experience it in our everyday lives. Suffering, violence, anguish and loss are deeply embedded in our human experience. The pandemic has left us depleted and drained, needing to care for one another’s wellbeing with renewed attentiveness, and with financial burdens to carry – our own and those of the most vulnerable in society.

And of course we have watched Good Friday in recent weeks, unfolding with horrifying momentum in the Ukraine.

Christ is present there, however hard it is for us to conceive of that. Our wounded healer, who carries in his body the weight of the world’s atrocities, is present in all places of anguish and trauma. That is how we know that the horror will not have the last word.

In Romans chapter 8, St Paul speaks of his hope that creation will be set free. He refers to the first fruits of the Spirit – the signs of that new life, of the freedom for which we wait in patience, and with hope. Steeped in this hope he declares ‘I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord’.

That is our Easter hope. There are glimpses of it in our daily lives and the lives of our communities: in small acts of kindness and unexpected transformations, in the outstretched hands of strangers welcoming refugees, in the patient work of therapists and medics, in the love of a friend sitting alongside someone in the depths of bereavement. We see signs of hope and healing if we open our eyes and look.

I pray that you will have a blessed Easter and that the seeds of hope, ever-present in our lives, will sustain you in the hardest times and give you joy in the assurance of God’s love.’

 


About Sarah Mullally

The Rt Revd and Rt Hon Dame Sarah Mullally DBE is the 133rd Bishop of London. Before ordination, Bishop Sarah was Chief Nursing Officer in the Department of Health. She trained for ministry at the South East Institute for Theologian Education.

Read more from Sarah Mullally

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