Birth and death – that cycle mirrored in the seasons and in our liturgical year, with the birth of Jesus so near the winter solstice as a symbol of light at the darkest time of the year and a celebration of resurrection just as the earth is renewing itself in spring. In November we can feel the earth closing down as it prepares for a time of rest. Our thoughts become more introspective and it is an appropriate season to liturgically mourn those who have died.
During this coming Sunday’s Evensong at 4:00 pm we have the chance to sit in community, sharing prayers and music as we commemorate those who have died. The very word Evensong evokes a peaceful, quiet place where the late afternoon sun creates unexpected kaleidoscopic colors around you. It signals the chance to end a day of doing with a few moments of being. As well we might remember that this is a community built equally on the ideas, hopes and efforts of Saints Past, Present and Future – those who have gone before, those who are here now, and those who will carry on the mission of this church in years to come. Sunday afternoon will be a time for you to come and be with the saints of St. Alban’s, whether they are the names of those who have died which are being read aloud during the prayers, or the people sitting next to you in the pew.
And I Saw a New Heaven- Edward Bainton
And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: For the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven, saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; And there shall be no more death, neither sorrow nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain, for the former things are passed away. – Revelations 21:1-4