Update Letter for April 8, 2020

April 8, 2020

 Greetings First Baptist Friends and Family,

 Welcome to the strangest Holy Week of our lives.  Lent, the 40 days leading up to Easter, literally means the lengthening of days.  I don’t know about you but several days during this COVID-19 crisis seem to be long and often it is hard to remember what day it is and has only a little to do with the increased sunlight.  The 40 days of lent is usually tagged to Jesus’ 40 day of testing in the desert.  A time of reflection, giving up what is normal, and embracing Scripture to deflect the arrows of the evil one.  With all that considered, this just might be the best the people of God have practiced Lent in hundreds of years or more.

 We are in the final stretch towards Easter.  An Easter where we celebrate the empty tomb while church buildings are empty as well.  Holy Week, from Palm Sunday to Easter offers some unique time of “Lenting” together.  As we reflect on Jesus’ life in the last days, the Gospel becomes more meaningful.  We are going to do a couple of extra Facebook Live streams (which you can watch live or after done via our Facebook page).  

 Thursday, April 9 @ 7:00 p.m., the Thursday before Easter is called Maundy-Thursday, Maundy meaning commandment, referring to Jesus saying, “Do this in remembrance of me until I return.”  It is a time to reflect on the Last Supper and first communion service.  I have titled this presentation “Wine or Welch’s” and at the end will encourage you to share in communion, so have your drink and bread ready.  This will take about 30 minutes and will not include worship music. 

 Friday, Good Friday, April 10 @ 3:00 p.m.  Jesus chose the Via Dolorosa, way of the cross.  Three times we have seen Jesus predict his brutal death in our study of Mark’s Gospel.  I will share with you in details that are very uncomfortable based on the Biblical text and an American Medical Association Journal article, what loving people and the Father cost Jesus.  Celebrating the Resurrection means a lot more when we pause and sit in the darkness of “Good” Friday.  Approximately 30 minutes, no worship music. 

 Sunday, Resurrection Sunday, April 12 @ 9:00 a.m.  A livestreaming celebration of an empty tomb from an empty church building.  People huddled and hiding in their homes when they hear the the news, “He has Risen!”  Maybe this year we will be closer to the original than we ever have been.  

 Grace, Peace and Undeniable Hope,  

 Pastor Clay 

 

 PS:  Thank you to those of you who have dropped off or sent checks to the Church.  The best way to contribute toward the ongoing ministries of Hillsboro First Baptist Church is to mail your contribution to:

FBC

P.O. Box 708

Hillsboro, Ohio 45133

 We encourage you to share or do a Watch Party via Facebook.  Remember – you can access the audio recording of our Sunday services by visiting our website: www.hillsborofirst.com and selecting the “Listen to Sunday Services”.

 Also, please contact us if you are unable to access Facebook and we will provide a DVD of our past streamlining services!