The whole Stephens–Smith–Blackett clan is gathered at the Smith residence for three days of Easter Celebration. It’s been great so far!
Last night, Good Friday, we celebrated Passover with a Passover Seder designed by Jean and prepared and participated in by the whole family. It was good and I think meaningful for us all to slow down and process through the ancient Passover meal with its rituals and rhythms. The roast lamb shank, the charoses, the moror, the roast egg, the matzo, the chicken soup, and turkey! The Israelites probably didn’t have turkey sandwiches on the way out of Egypt, but we took a bit of liberty with the tradition.
The explanations, the recitations, and the prayers were significant to the youngsters, even if they didn’t understand all the detail of it. I’m not sure I understand all the detail myself! We finished with communion and cake!
So this morning we took the grandkids on an Easter Egg Hunt. Bethlehem Lutheran church, a sort of traditional mainline church in a very non-traditional Tacoma neighborhood hosted an “everyone’s invited” Easter Egg Hunt on the spacious church grounds. The candy-filled plastic eggs were hidden in plain sight for the younger kids and on the fence, in the trees, and beside the “No loitering or trespassing” signs on the edge of the parking lot.
It was pretty clear that we were among the few “outsiders” and that most of the attendees were Bethlehem Lutheran regulars and their grandkids with a few neighborhood unchurched folks thrown in the mix.
The Easter Eggs, including a few Golden Eggs with prizes, were snatched up in no time and then we all gathered in the church basement for a post-hunt debriefing and to empty the plastic eggs so they can be used again next year. Good stewardship!
One of the hunt organizers was making her way around from table to table welcoming the guests and reminding us all about the Easter Service tomorrow morning. She said, “If you’re looking for a church, we’re looking for people!” Makes sense to me!
Another lady approached Jean and asked if she’d had one of the cupcakes. Jean said, “No thanks, I’ve had a cookie and some coffee.” The lady said, “I baked them myself!” which in Bethlehem Lutheran is translated, “Eat a cupcake if you know what’s good for you!” We shared a cupcake. Bit dry, actually.
I think it was a good effort on the part of a group of mostly elderly, mostly introverted church people to reach out to the changing population of their changing neighborhood. God bless them. God bless Bethlehem Lutheran Church!