Year B: April 7, 2013
First Reading: Acts 5:27-32
Unspoken by Henry Cole (Written for ages 5 – 9)
Comment: “We must obey God rather than any human authority.” This text invites us to think about what it means to be obedient to God, even when it goes against the earthly powers that be. Peter and the apostles taught about Jesus because they believed this is what God was calling them to do. Carlos F. Cardoza-Orlandi says that in seeking to be obedient to God, our “faithfulness requires discernment, wisdom, and risk.” (Feasting on the Word, Year C, Volume 2, p 382) In Unspoken, a wordless story of the underground railroad, a young girl uses discernment, wisdom, and risk as she decides to help a runaway slave hiding on her family’s property. In hearing Peter’s words and reflecting on the powerful images of Unspoken, encourage your congregation to consider the ways they have been called to obey God when it has gone against human authority.
Second Reading: Revelation 1:4-8
And To Think That We Thought That We’d Never Be Friends by Mary Ann Hoberman
(Written for ages 5-9)
Comment: This text invites us to live into the message of Easter, even as we wait and look for the coming of Christ’s reign. We are called to consider the ways we have been changed by the risen Christ, who “made us to be a kingdom.” As Easter people, we seek to live in ways that reflect the promise of what is coming. In Hoberman’s story, people and animals are changed by the power of music; they learn to see one another through a new lens, as friends. The book invites readers to experience creation joined together in joy and peace. This story gives a small glimpse of what it might be like on the day we look up and see Christ coming in the clouds. This text and story invite us to imagine and live for the coming of a time when we are no longer separated by the powers of evil and sin, but can joyfully proclaim, “forever and ever we’ll always be friends!”
Gospel Reading: John 20:19-31
The Boy Who Cried Bigfoot! by Scott Magoon
(Written for ages 5-9)
Comment: Each Easter when we hear this text, we ponder the old phrase “seeing is believing.” In seeing and believing, Thomas proclaims Christ as his Lord and God. Like Thomas, The Boy Who Cried Bigfoot comes to true belief through an experience of seeing; the story ends with the boy marching into the woods with his camera, despite his fears, because he is determined to share what he’s seen with others so they will believe. For Thomas and the boy, seeing is believing, but what about those of us who don’t have the option of seeing? In some ways our faith depends upon hearing the sacred stories of those who did see Christ, yet we also experience Christ in other ways. Wonder together with your congregation about the ways they’ve experienced and came to know the risen Christ.
**Note other suggestions for this text from Easter 2B (http://storypath.wordpress.com/2012/03/17/lectionary-links-sunday-april-15-2012/) and Easter 3A (http://storypath.wordpress.com/2011/04/22/lectionary-links-sunday-may-8-2011/)
The Lectionary Links were written by regular contributor Noell Rathbun-Cook.