Christchurch South Methodist Parish
St Marks Church
ST MARKS METHODIST CHURCH, SOMERFIELD
This year St Marks Church will celebrate 92 years of worship services in Somerfield on July 7th Services began first at Somerfield School and then moved to the St Marks site at 5 Somerfield St. The newly renovated St Marks Complex was opened on Saturday February 8th 2020.
- Growing & sharing our faith in God,
- Joining together for worship & celebration,
- Living faith by serving others and offering hospitality to our local community
OUR CORE VALUES:
Creativity, Outreach, Teamwork, Worshipfulness
CHRISTCHURCH SOUTH METHODIST PARISH DETAILS:
St Marks Church and Hall
Cnr Barrington & Somerfield Streets, Somerfield, Christchurch 8024
Car Park entry from Barrington Street
Rooms are available for hire during the week please contact Paul Titus 021 655 092
PRESBYTER: REV ANDREW DONALDSON
27 Remuera Ave, Cashmere, Christchurch 8022
Phone:027 428 7356
Services are normally available on Zoom. Please contact Rev. Andrew Donaldson on 027 428 7356 for access details
APRIL 11th 10 a.m. Linda Cowan
APRIL 18th 10 a.m. Rev Andrew Donaldson
APRIL 25th 10 a.m. Margaret Woodcock
Note: The EKTO Tuvaluan congregation usually meets at St Marks 2 p.m. on Sunday afternoons. For more information Please contact Rev Kitasi Sione on 021 090 51360
I won't go into great detail about the familiar Easter story here but talk about the lesser Easter symbols. There are a variety of familiar symbols that are used to celebrate Easter. These include the Easter egg and Easter Bunny, hot cross buns, the crucifix, the empty cross and the empty tomb. I'll reflect on just three. The Easter egg, Easter Bunny and Easter Buns.
The Easter egg and the Easter Bunny predate Christianity but were given a new lease of life in Lutheran Germany. The Easter Bunny first appears as the Easter Hare. Initially the Easter Hare, like Father Christmas, judged whether girls and boys were good or disobedient. Easter was also a time of year for gift giving to children. This continues of course to our time, mostly in the form of chocolate.
Originally the bunny brought gifts of coloured eggs for the eating. The fixation of the church on sex went as far as answering the question of how does the bunny giving eggs remain a virgin. Such a silly question deserves a very silly answer. Thank heavens we have a greater understanding of how biology works today. Although I think we have known for millennia that rabbits don't lay eggs.
Eggs are an ancient symbol for new life and in the northern hemisphere are associated with the new life celebrated in the Easter story of Jesus Christ. Most of us would remember blown and decorated eggshells or dyed eggs. The dying of eggs red represented the blood of Jesus. Hot cross buns originated in England in the Middle Ages. The bun is eaten after Palm Sunday or at the end of Lent. The cross on top represents the crucifixion of Jesus of Nazareth and looks forward to the celebration of the resurrection. The spices represent the spices used to embalm the body of Jesus.
In recent years there has been a move to de-Christianise Easter eggs, bunnies and buns. There was one attempt to rename hot cross buns as "hot angry buns"- both silly and grotesque. However, the banning of hot cross buns is not new. On at least two separate occasions hot cross buns were forbidden to be eaten on Good Friday and Christmas Day by the London Clerk of Markets (once in the reign of Elizabeth 1 and the second not long after, in the reign of James 1. At that time these buns were baked in domestic kitchens. If caught the buns were forfeited and given to the poor. A Robin Hood of redistributing wealth.
If my memory serves me correctly, my family followed a similar pattern for both Easter Sunday and Christmas Day mornings: get out of bed, dressed for Church, not an ordinary breakfast, go to church, come home for present opening or receiving a chocolate Easter egg.
While Easter is the most important celebration in the Church calendar, with Christmas following behind, this is not what I thought growing up. Christmas was clearly the most important given the hoard collected at Christmas was far greater than the number of eggs collected. A solid Sunday School curriculum did ensure this error was corrected.
Are there other Easter symbols you might recall from church or associated family traditions?