Easter -- Meditations on the Light: Easter Vigil Service

Poetic Meditations on Scripture for a Service of Light

Easter Vigils traditionally include a service of light, in which the faithfulness of God is lifted up in scripture passages which employ images of light. Stephanie Crumpton, a young poet from Atlanta, created for General Synod 26 five original poems based on the scripture texts featuring these metaphors. Combined with art projected in slide, video or PowerPoint, they offer a foundation for a joyful, beautiful Easter Vigil celebration. Other elements of an Easter Vigil may be found in Book of Worship, page 225, or in the Worship Ways Archives at ucc.org.

Genesis 9:8-17

The Rainbow

After the flood...
The Creator summons light
And rain dissolves into mist

Holding it up before faithful eyes
The Divine
Raises a spectrum of living color
From earth's willing depths

The illumination stalls time
Just long enough for souls
To find rest and restoration
In the hope...
That "this too shall pass"

In an act of Creative love
Eternal hands wipe away tears
Fluttering vibrant color everywhere!

Dustings of green celebrate uplifted trees
Footprints of red honor rising suns
Streaks of orange dance the dawn of daybreak
Speckles of yellow consecrate midnight moons
Waves of indigo whisper the mystery of the ocean's blue

After the flood...

Creative hands lovingly paint the sky
With the brilliant light of life
Soothing both Creator and Created

Exodus 3:1-12

The Burning Bush

Swift...Persistent...and Demanding
The fire of justice
Drifts from heaven
To ignite a waiting earth
Rising smoke clears the path
Between Creator and Created
Revealing an opening
Where ancestors dance in the crackling embers
Their chanting tongues
And
Raised feet offer an invitation
Moses accepts
Raising his own soles to join the dance
He moves closer
But his rhythm is interrupted ...
First there is a warning:
"Not another step"
Followed by an invocation:
"Take off your shoes"
Moved to obedience by the power of mystery
A barefooted Moses
Is consecrated
In the
Swift...Persistent...and Demanding...
Fire of justice

Matthew 2:1-12

Following the Star

Up from restful beds
Three wise heads rise with the moon
Peering beyond covered tents
They ask of the night sky
"What is your story?"
Moving like a secret that holds deep truth
Darkness relaxes itself
As a rising star begins to speak
In a faint whisper they hear
"Emmanuel! They will call him the Prince of Peace."
Having heard
Sturdy feet dance a circle of celebration
Wrinkled hands
Prepare gold, frankincense and myrrh
Now ready...
They ride the East winds West...
To the Light of the World
Whom they find...
In the arms of a determined mother
In the care of a loving father
Cradled...
Beneath the sky
Of a Still Speaking God

Matthew 17:1-12
John 20:1-19

The Light

As if battling destiny
When it threatens to come too soon
The Ancients:
One named Moses
Another called Elijah
Gather up from resting spaces
And agree...
"He will need to know that he is not alone"
Traveling the arch that bridges now and then
They step into the gap between past and present
To reveal themselves
The comfort of their communion is an offering
Proud of their compassion
Aware of this need
The Creator is moved
To commit an act of loving speech
It is sacred...
"You are my child"
Tender...
"I am pleased"
Eternal...
"Listen to my beloved
Filled with this love
He is made ready
To radiate beyond the mountaintop
Endure death on a cross
Shine against the shadow of an empty tomb
Ascend into the everlasting Circle of life
And be the cause
Of brilliant tears
Glowing in the eyes
Of rejoicing women
As they proclaim...
"He's not dead..."

Revelation 21:22-22:5

It's Time

Rising in the East
A willing sun offers light
Her rays are wings
Innocent children
Hopeful women
And faithful men
Take flight on the strength she offers
For the last time

Arching West
The horizon is her final smile
A waiting moon receives her sign
Up from resting...
His pale glow extends its embrace
To hold
Keep safe
And restore
Innocent hearts
Hopeful minds
And faithful souls
For the last time

Humanity
Weary...yet faithful
Eases into night's cradle
Only to wake
For all of time

In the eternal blessing
Of a new heaven
And warm grace
Of a complete earth
The light of a world without end

Meditations on Light written by Stephanie M. Crumpton, Youth Minister at First Congregational UCC Atlanta

Copyright 2007 Local Church Ministries, Worship and Education Ministry Team, United Church of Christ, 700 Prospect Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44115-1100. Permission granted to reproduce or adapt this material for use in services of worship or church education. All publishing rights reserved.

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CONTACT INFO

Rev. Susan A. Blain
Minister for Worship, Liturgy and Spiritual Formation
700 Prospect Ave.
Cleveland,Ohio 44115
216-736-3869
blains@ucc.org

Rev. Scott A. Ressman
Minister for Worship, Music and Liturgical Arts
700 Prospect Ave.
Cleveland,Ohio 44115
216-736-3870
ressmans@ucc.org