A Holy Saturday Letter

Typically we have written and sent out (or distributed electronically, as the case often is) our Easter letter by now (our version of a family Christmas letter). It clearly hasn't happened this year. And it's not going to happen at this point.

I confess that I feel a little guilty not writing one. Especially not spending one back to all the people who sent us a card at Christmas.

But I also just don't have the drive to do it this year. I often feel that the letter--while intending to keep in touch and share our lives with our friends--sometimes just turns into bragging. And while there's a lot to brag about (Beth's immense success in her academic endeavors, Nils' taking to hockey quite well, Anders' fantastic job at beginning on the violin despite his hate of practicing), it kind of feels like there's nothing worthwhile to share. And the fact is that if you're reading this, you've probably kept up with our lives via this blog or facebook. I should probably put time into writing each of you personally (though at this point in the school year, I just don't have much drive or energy--maybe in six weeks!).

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I sometimes feel this unsettling tension about Holy Saturday. We've often attended a Good Friday service (as I did last night) remembering the suffering Jesus went through on the cross. Tomorrow, of course, we'll attend the Resurrection Sunday service at church remembering that He didn't stay dead, but arose. Holy Saturday sits in the tension between those events. The Apostles Creed states that Jesus spent this day in Hell (theologically, I believe death/Hell is separation from God which Jesus seemed to experience on the cross and in the grave).

To Jesus' followers it was the Sabbath Day--a day of rest. Nothing to do but sit and contemplate the events that had just transpired, hoping for a different outcome, somehow finding a way to be present enough to worship God.

We don't know what they did or experienced following the crucifixion: fear? anger? disappointment? worry? hope?

It seems that they were gathered together as was their habit. Maybe worshiping God. Maybe sitting in silent fear. Probably eating. But they were together.

It's a good habit, gathering together. It's one of the reasons we try not to travel around this weekend. While I love and miss my family, I like to have this holiday to be in our church with our family there. We often open up our home to those who aren't having an Easter meal elsewhere. But we gather together.

I hope that through this past Holy Week and into tomorrow's Resurrection Sunday, you will have found places to gather together whether it be with family, friends, or the people you regularly worship with. May togetherness be a place of comfort during times of grief, sadness, tension, or hope.

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I'll end this "letter" of sorts by wishing you and your family a joyous Eastertide. Stop by and visit if you're in the Twin Cities (stay the night if you need). We'll have some food, play some games, and have some good time. Gathered together.


The Wenells

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