Dear friends in Christ,
Like most of you, I spent Easter morning at home, saying prayers and watching a service elsewhere online. It was not like any other Easter in my lifetime. And while it wasn’t an Easter I would have hoped for, I was still able to celebration the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
While Easter day might be the most muted Easter we’ll know, the coronavirus crisis also creates opportunity. Perhaps as we’re all at home, we can cultivate a greater awareness of Eastertide as a season of fifty days.
We can say or sing alleluias every day. We can find an image of the resurrection of Jesus and place it in our homes to remind us of the joy and wonder of the triumph of God’s love. And we can spend time with God’s word.
Forward Movement has partnered with other organizations to offer the Good Book Club this Eastertide. Over the 50 days of Easter, you are invited to join with people around the world in reading through the entire Gospel of Matthew. If you haven’t already started, it will be easy to catch up. We’re just four days in. And that leaves 46 more days of Eastertide!
You can find the readings on the Good Book Club website. Each day we post the readings and a reflection question on the Good Book Club Facebook page. And there’s a podcast with the readings, a meditation, a reflection question, and a prayer. If you’re curious about the Gospel of Matthew, we have prepared a short primer.
Everything I’ve mentioned is free. If you’d like a guided path through this season, A Journey with Matthew is available as an ebook for only $7.99. You can buy the paper book, too, but it will take a few days to arrive. It has the gospel reading, a meditation, reflection questions, and a prayer each day (same as the podcast).
There are more resources listed online, and perhaps your diocese or congregation has created some too.
Most importantly, I encourage you to take advantage of this time at home. While we are certainly struggling with many aspects of being forced to stay home, there can also be opportunities. Perhaps this season is the means to engage in a Bible study in your home, whether by yourself, or with other members of your household, or with a friend, or with your congregation online.
Easter blessings to you all. Even in this strange time, may you know the joys of God’s word and of Christ’s resurrection.
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With Vicki Garvey
For six weeks this Easter, meet with other students from around the world for a free, live, online class on the Gospel of Matthew with Vicki Garvey, a respected teacher and author and former Canon for Lifelong Education at the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago.
In this class, Vicki will teach us about the author, origin, setting, and message of the Gospel of Matthew. Classes will meet live on Thursday nights via zoom from April 23-May 28, 2020, and they will last an hour.
This class is ideal for people participating in the Good Book Club 2020, and for anyone interested in learning more about the Gospel of Matthew.
Listen to today’s Forward Day by Day reflection on the Forward Day by Day podcast. Find morning prayer on the Morning at the Office podcast and end your day with the Evening at Prayer podcast. Available anywhere you listen!
New Release: The Heart of a Leader
In The Heart of a Leader, Bishop Edward S. Little moves through 2 Timothy, drawing on the lessons and teachings of Paul as a guide for mentoring and encouraging others to a life deeply committed to Christ. While we live in a radically different culture than Timothy and Paul, we struggle today with some of the same hard spiritual questions. We puzzle our way through intractable conflict. We face a world that is sometimes indifferent to the gospel and other times, outright hostile to it. Like Timothy and Paul, we wonder: What is essential to our Christian faith?
Paul’s second letter to Timothy can instruct us as surely as it taught its early readers. We are all Timothy. We stand in need of mentoring. We are all Paul, with apprentices in our care.
Due to the Covid-19 outbreak, the printing of this title has been delayed until late summer. Pre-order your print copy today, but also know that we’ve made the e-book version available early. You can find it on Amazon Kindle, Barnes and Noble Nook, and at the iTunes store.
In case you missed it…
The Cross and the Coronavirus | Earth & Altar
Easter is more than what happens inside red church doors | Grow Christians
Read our latest issue of Odyssey | Forward Movement
Free Shipping on orders of $50 throughout April | Forward Movement