“This is and will always be a highlight in my ministry career.”Rev. Pastor Scott M. Low, Tallmadge United Methodist Church
Those are the words of Rev. Scott M. Low who has been in the ministry for more than 29 years and has been the pastor of Tallmadge United Methodist Church since 2016. Other pastors have expressed similar sentiments. It’s in times like these we need highlights. When we are trapped in our homes, told there is an invisible foe who is out to take our lives and make us or our loved ones deathly ill.
I have to say that Easter 2020—in spite of its difficulties—turned out to be one I will never forget. We were able to unite as the Body of Christ across denominations, movements and independent congregations to offer a service to our community and congregants. Of course, I missed shaking hands and looking people in the eye, but this may have been a once-in-a-lifetime event for an Easter Sunday service. It was a foretaste of heaven as people from “different tribes” were brought together (Revelation 7:9). Yeah, I know there won’t be any COVID-19 in heaven but you get the point.
Several people who are not members of my congregation reached out to ask for our congregations to come together again. Not only was it a foretaste of heaven because of the multiple tribes who attended but because people left longing for more. Heaven is something we long for (2 Corinthians 5:2). It’s fitting that people left with that longing after celebrating the risen Christ. Christ not only is our hope but he is the only one who can fulfill the deep longing we all have to live in a world united with peace and without death and disease. In this way, being in Christ and being united with Him in heaven is what it means to be truly at home. I believe we were given a glimpse of that on Easter Sunday. That is what Easter is supposed to do.
So, thank you to all the churches, pastors and volunteers who participated! A special thank you to the congregations of Tallmadge Alliance Church, First Congregational Church of Tallmadge, Tallmadge United Methodist Church, SPAN Ministries, Tallmadge Lutheran Church and my own congregation, First Church of God.
Pastor Josh Deeter, First Church of God Tallmadge