Sunday, 31 March 2024 05:00

Happy Easter!

A message from Bishop Libby

My faith is rooted in thanksgiving: I believe God gave everything for me in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus - in gratitude I chose to give my everything back to God.

At Easter, Christians celebrate Jesus’s victory over sin and death. Over this past week we have recalled Jesus’s last days before his crucifixion, remembering his arrest, trial and suffering.

On Good Friday we commemorate his death in wonder that God chose not only to share our humanity but also to die for us that we might receive forgiveness of sins and the hope of life everlasting - a promise fulfilled in Jesus' resurrection from the dead, on Easter Sunday.

This year, through Lent, I have taken the opportunity to return to the basics of my faith with 40 days preparation for the celebration of Easter.

For six weeks, I have made time in my own life for those things I encourage in others:

  • I have been joining volunteers serving their local contexts – coming alongside those running a debt advice service; those offering good food and good company to combat hunger and loneliness; I have made cups of tea for those protecting children from exploitation, joined in with a community choir improving mental health and learnt about work being done to support victims of domestic abuse.
  • With family and colleagues, and about 80 others, I have challenged the injustice of homelessness by joining ‘Sleep Easy’. Sleeping rough for just one night in support of the work of Derby YMCA and Padley Group, our aim was to draw attention to the terrible vulnerability of those who find themselves without safe and sustainable housing.
  • Privately, I have been deepening my relationship with God by putting aside time each day to be still and quiet and be attentive to his presence in the world around me. A simple but joyful pleasure has been a free App on my phone that helps to identify the birds I’ve heard each day and then posting my discoveries on Facebook.
  • In sharing the good news of Jesus Christ, I have taken every opportunity to invite others to join in the life of the Kingdom of God as His disciples. A particular highlight of Lent this year was the Service of Baptism and Confirmation at HMPrison Foston Hall. What a privilege to welcome into the Household of God those, in complex and challenging circumstances, who have made the choice to follow Jesus.

This Easter, I invite you to consider that choice too – or to reaffirm the choice you may have made long ago - to give your all to the One who gave everything for us as we celebrate the extraordinary promise and joy of new life this Easter Sunday.

I pray you a joyful Easter, full of hope and peace.

Last modified on Monday, 22 April 2024 11:37

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