Third Sunday of Easter

First Scripture Reading
Acts 5: 27-32, 40b-41
Second Scripture Reading
Revelation 5: 11-14
Gospel Reading
John 21: 1-19

Opening Prayer

Jesus, Passover Lamb, we celebrate that you have passed over and brought us to God. In the depths of our baptized being, we hear the echoes of the triumphant celebration of your reign in heaven. Yet we still experience here the birthing struggle of your reign trying to come to full life. Amid the confusing and contracting birthpains, instill us with hope and faith. Teach us to be faithful, like the apostles, to proclaim your truth, even when others feel threatened by it. We so want to keep people happy and are so politically cautious that sometimes your gospel is compromised. Like Peter, sometimes it is difficult to look you straight in the eye. You show up again as we return to the routine of our lives. We remember our denials, even as you confront us with your love. Help us to step over our embarrassment and fickleness, and love you even more wholeheartedly. Enable us to pay the price of following you and passing over with you. We’d much rather celebrate the victory, but you trust us to struggle with birth and new life. Thank you for rising within us so powerfully, and for loving us so tenderly.

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