Thank You for the Flowers – A Reflection on Easter

June 21, 2018
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In this reflection on Easter, Jane Bottomley looks back at her first Holy Week at St Paul and St John the Evangelist Church, Monklands. 

For some years I’ve been aware of a fault line running through my life, a kind of displacement between religion and faith.

It is still only a matter of weeks since I arrived in Airdrie and walked into your church.  I have moved often and walked into a number of churches, greeted at the door.  Here you have welcomed me with genuine unreserved warmth; drawn me in, listened, held my hand, hugged me, fed me.

The Easter worship you have shared with me is the most real and profound I have ever experienced.

The flowers for The Watch stunned me. The perfume overpowered me.  Such a beautiful and extravagant gesture of love and devotion.  Nard!

The Eucharist on Friday was horrifying – bear with me – for the first time I actually felt the horror of what happened, continues to happen and my own culpability in it.  It hit so hard that I almost didn’t come forward to the altar, to eat the broken body. But you didn’t hesitate and I was reassured that if I came with you it would be alright.  I was forgiven before I even knew repentance.

So on Easter Sunday, with the joy of those beautiful, extravagant, sacrificial flowers I realised that the fault in my life is moving; faith, religion and love are realigning.

Thank you!