COVID-19 did not cancel Easter – Spiritual Baptist Archbishop
An Easter Message
From His Eminence The Most Reverend Melford Matthias Pompey
Archbishop of the Spiritual Baptist Archdiocese SVG
Behold, Man’s Redemption has been paid!
1 Peter 1:3: says, “According to God’s great mercy, He has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.”
Let us join with all Spiritual Baptists and other religious bodies here in St. Vincent and the Grenadines and the diaspora in praising Jesus Christ for His selflessness in sacrificing His life; showing His deep love for humanity.
Let me remind you that Covid -19 did not cancel out our Easter Celebration. Yes, there is a slight difference than ever before in our Celebration this year, but we will continue to have tremendous hope, happiness, prosperity, and abundance through God’s divine grace, not only for this year, but for all eternity. May the beauty of Easter holidays warm your hearts and bring peace and joy to you and your family even in the midst of Covid -19.
The term “Easter” comes from the Greek word ‘Pascha’, which means “He passed over,” in memory of Jesus Christ‘s great deliverance, or Resurrection. Hence, Easter holiday is a festival associated with the observance of the resurrection of Jesus Christ, which is being observed by Christians and non-Christians worldwide. For Christians, the origin of Easter is simply the crucifixion of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ on that very first “Good Friday” and His resurrection approximately 2,000 years ago.
According to the Gospel accounts, Jesus Christ, the true Messiah who was promised in the Old Testament and was born ofthe Virgin Mary in the New Testament, was later crucified and resurrected at the time of the Jewish Passover. Since that astounding event, those who believe that Christ is their Messiah have honoured that day and often celebrated it with the traditional Passover.” St. Mathew 26: 1-2. Jesus drank of the bitter cup of suffering and pain both before, and while He hung on the cross. His mission to come to this earth to provide hope and forgiveness of sins was completed for all times! St John19:30 As he drew his final breath on the cross he uttered those redemptive words “It is finished” in Greek translation “Tetelestai”, which comes from the verb “teleo”, meaning “to bring to an end, to complete, to accomplish.” Jesus Christ has accomplished the task of paying the ransom for the sins of mankind. Behold, Man’s Redemption has been paid!
Today I pray for the serenity to accept the things we cannot change, courage to change the things we can and wisdom to know the difference. Given a press release earlier from my desk, I am not ordering a total lock down of our Spiritual Baptist Churches at this time, since the Government has issued just an advisory and not a ban to be enforced. Pastors and members are asked to follow guidelines as far as possible, but once a ban is put on church activities, all churches are asked to respect the decision of the authority/Government. I have also declared three (3) days of prayers and fasting from Holy Thursday to Easter Saturday. Churches are also advised to avoid church invitations at this time where gatherings exceed 25 persons, example thanksgiving, baptism and such like. All members of the Spiritual Baptist Archdiocese are asked to adhere to these instructions.
Finally, I need to make it clear to our nation that I am not supporting any alternative secular/materialistic activity to replace Carnival this year, except those of a spiritual nature for cleansing and to give glory to Almighty God. I believe that God will protect and shield those of us who truly trust in Him, from the coronavirus, so we need not give in to fear at this time, for God has not given us a spirit of fear. Let us do all the necessary things we are asked to do by the relevant authorities and our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ would do the rest in protecting and shielding us from this fatal virus.
As we celebrate this Easter, let us remember in prayer those who are not well, especially those suffering from the coronavirus, and offer our sympathy to those families who have lost loved ones.
May the miracle of Easter help you to feel the presence and power of God and may all your prayers be answered. He arose a victor from the dark domain and He lives forever with His Saints to reign. HAPPY EASTER TO ALL