Bishop's message: 'Easter changes everything'

Right Revd Peter Hill, Bishop of Barking.

Right Revd Peter Hill, Bishop of Barking. - Credit: Diocese of Chelmsford

Easter changes everything! And as we begin to emerge from this cruel pandemic, we so long for change.

It feels like the wilderness of lent and the agony of Holy Week have lasted a whole year as we have travelled the way of the cross with our crucified Lord.

The more so for the many who have been brutally struck down with Covid or bereaved: that has been their harshest reality and experience.

On a Friday which we now call “Good”, Jesus’ friends had seen him beaten, bruised, bleeding and finally stone cold dead on a cross.

Their only consolation was that he was now resting in peace and buried in a rock tomb that was secured by a massive stone.


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But it was not the end. Breaking out on the third day, Jesus destroyed the power of suffering and death and showed that there is more life to come for us all: here and now and beyond this pandemic’s worst.

Our Lord Jesus did not rest in peace, he rose in power. Easter changes everything!

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If Jesus did rise from the dead, then there is no more important fact in the universe or for our existence.

He broke out of the tomb so that he could break into our lives: to offer us total hope now and for the future.

For me, at the age of 20, finally realising that truth was the game changer. The risen Jesus broke in to my life and transformed me from an argumentative atheist into a Christian disciple: far from easily, but definitely.

Nothing has been the same since.

But Easter is not only personal, it is cosmic. It is the promise of God for our broken world.

We are on our way to a new creation; a new earth where pandemics, disasters, destruction and decay will be no more. Evil and injustice will be wiped away. All will be made new, more real than ever. True peace will reign. This world is a mere shadow of what is to come.

Easter is a vision of the future with God. It is here now and is coming to a place near you! And we are called to join in.

There are times in all our lives when we feel despondent, broken and defeated or simply apathetic...there seems to be no real hope in the world.

That has been the experience of so many this past year. And that is exactly how the disciples felt after the crucifixion, but it was not the end for Jesus rose from the dead.

God still breaks out with new life and possibility so that he can break into where we are and how we are today.

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