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Jesus Christ Is Risen!

286. Jesus Christ Is Risen

In 1997 I was a lay pastor in an American Baptist Church in Nyack, NY. It was the day before Easter and I met Mr. Ted Dobek at 9am at the church so he could look at the two notes on the piano that weren’t playing. He was our usual piano technician and a delightful man. When I called him the day before he was totally booked up for Saturday but found a way to squeeze us in to his busy schedule. I showed him where to turn the lights on and off.

Then we stood at the front of the sanctuary talking. He said, “In our church all during Holy Week, each family takes a turn at fasting and praying. We pray for each other…” In his broken English he searched for the word… “How do you say it, we pray not on top but deep for each other. We know each other and what is going on. We pray deep. Easter we will eat together after the service.”

These many years later I still remember the smile on his face as he said, “Easter is a wonderful time.” I agreed that it was. He headed toward the piano, looking at me. I started walking toward the door, still looking at him. He said “Jesus Christ is risen.” I said, “He is risen indeed!”

There was a joy—a naming—a sharing between us.

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