Dear Friends in Christ!

It’s the First Day of Spring as I sit to write this April greeting. Salamanders are making their way to the vernal pools in their ancient migrations. Soon the peepers will be singing from every wetland. New life is rising – dormant bud’s swelling with the promise of emergent leaf in every shade of pastel green. I’ll be watching for the spray of shad-bush flower – the first tree blossom of spring. Seeds are germinating in their flats on heat mats under lights, each variety in their turn: celery, parsley, peppers, tomatoes, and basil. And then the annual flowers bringing summer’s promised colors.

Spring’s heart-warming gift is in the life that always seems to emerge from winter’s dead or dying left-overs. The green of crocus blade spears the sodden maple leaves, rising through their blanket, and more color, more life follows.

It’s in this season we come, again, to the promise of the old familiar story that leads throughJerusalem to crucifixion and death. And in each Spring, as we re-tell the story, we’re challenged to listen with fresh ears for the meaning and the message for our new day.

As we remember and commemorate the end of Jesus’ life, we often focus on our personalrelationships with Jesus. What might it be like for us – each one of us individually, and all of us as a community of faith – if we heard these familiar stories as if we actually were members of Jesus’ family: a brother or sister, or perhaps one of the disciples, each one a personal friend – which of course, we are!

What better way to celebrate the Resurrection than as Christ’s beloved community! We look for the Risen Christ and find him in the faces of his Beloved community – all our kin – in God’s kin-dom.

May this new and turning season blossom for each of you and for Newfane Church as we follow in the Way of Jesus. May we be a blessing to those around us both near and far.

In the promised joy of Christ,