“Rebirth and renewal” is what one of children said when I asked what they thought about Easter during Sunday’s service. I was expecting things like “Easter Bunny,” “Flowers”, or “Candy.” This congregation is apparently doing an exceptionally good job teaching our children about meaning, life, and ritual!
Rebirth and renewal are possible–out of the hardest and darkest experiences, we can often survive, persist, and make it through. This is true–seeing the children collect flowers for the flower communion on Sunday only reminded me of this truth. And, I know my heart was heavy this Easter thinking about some of my loved ones who never experienced “resurrection.” My heart was heavy with the knowledge that so many people live in the Saturday in between Good Friday and Easter Sunday–that messy middle, where “life” and “death” are not so bounded and distinct. The middle is about survival and can be easily ignored because death and life so easily overshadow it. Not all of us find resurrection and rebirth out of the deaths, big and small, in our lives. There is so much living/surviving/dying that has yet to be witnessed. For me, as a religious people, we Unitarian Universalists are called to this task of messy witnessing. And when I think about how the children have been using a shell to honor of one of our children who has been sick, taking that shell to the playground, I know that our children are already living up to this calling.