Easter in the Autumn

17Apr12

Bunnies in the baptistry?

Easter in the northern hemisphere is synonymous with the arrival of spring. We draw upon images of budding daffodils and hopping bunnies to celebrate Christ’s emergence from the tomb because the new life around us reminds us of our new lives in Jesus. In Argentina and Paraguay however, Easter inaugurates autumn. No crocuses, tulips, or exuberant forsythia blossoms burst onto a barren winter landscape to supply us with ready metaphors for Jesus’ life-giving resurrection. Instead, the days get shorter and sweaters are resurrected from summer storage.

Nevertheless, James and I have found that Easter in the southern hemisphere brings its own kind of awakening. After all, autumn is the season when the oppressive summer heat finally abates, kids return to school, and the pace of life quickens. Church life speeds up too: Sunday school classes restart, choirs rehearse, and bible study groups begin anew.

Last week in Resistencia, Argentina, Easter Sunday brought the chance to recognize moments of new beginning in the lives of five people in its community of faith: two new members joined the church, one teenager was confirmed, and two other teens were baptized. The gravity on the faces of the new members and the teens, and the elation evident amongst the entire church family, revealed how important the day was for everyone.

The congregation greets the newly baptized boys

After we fed our spirits with the joyful Easter service, what was left but to fill our bellies as well? The congregation’s chefs dug out the giant cooking pot and boiled up a mountain of tallarines (aka, tagliatelli), which we ate with slurps of homemade tomato sauce and bursts of happy conversation.

James and the giant pasta pot

Waddling home after the pasta feast (thankfully we live right next door to the church), I thought how appropriate it was to be eating noodles on Easter. Growing up, following Korean tradition, my family celebrated birthdays by eating noodles to symbolize longevity. Likewise, Easter Sunday in Resistencia marked—without a single budding daffodil—a birth, a new chapter for the church and its members. And this renewal will ultimately help assure the longevity and continued blossoming of the church.

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3 Responses to “Easter in the Autumn”

  1. Hi James you look wonderful!
    I’ve been following your blog but at time I want sure if I had the right site. Then viola! You appeared in this wonderful photo.You look like the mission field is cheering with you.
    I’ll hereto you and Marion in my prayers. Keep snapping photos! I enjoy it. Have God blessed days always.
    Peace,
    Cleo


  1. 1 Unendangered Species « resistanceandacceptance

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