Year C, Easter Sunday, 2019 – He is Risen!
He is Risen, indeed!
Welcome to the show! This is a special episode, because 1) we have never done a show for Easter before, and 2) we have decided to concentrate on the Gospel passage using all eight intelligences, and 3) we’re live! We’ve done a “live” show before, which for us means that we simply sit down, turn on the microphones and recorder, and see what inspiration comes as we dissect the texts for the intelligences. It’s simultaneously exhilarating and terrifying – just like preaching can be sometimes! It also means the show is a little long this week – just like preaching can be sometimes!
You can download the worksheet for this week’s episode below. Also, check out our resources about Multiple Intelligence Theory at the links on the top right hand side of the page.
Text for the Week
WORD Smart – [04:43]
We have an illustration that will click with parents. How many times have you told your kids something, and they seem not to hear it? Then, a different adult or one of their peers will say the same thing, and suddenly they hear it! Wearing dazzling clothes while you say it may help, perhaps. For a special effect, insert some puzzle games in the bulletin using key words from the passage. For a larger visual, print those words out on posters and display them around the worship space. Or, invite someone up to write down words that people hear and then display those.
EYE Smart – [09:22]
The Gospel of Mark tells us the women who went to the tomb met a man dressed in white but in Luke’s Gospel, they meet two men dressed in dazzling clothes. We’re thinking sequins! Also, all four Gospels show the women expecting one thing when they get there and finding something else, so invite your congregation to imagine showing up to church and discovering all the pews are gone. It’s like the scene in Risky Business when Joel comes home to discover Guido has taken all his parents’ furniture. For special effects, use some sleight of hand magic tricks, or a dimmer switch on your lights to change the mood from dark to light.
MATH Smart – [14:18]
How can two things be true at the same time? For the women, the reality is Jesus is not in the tomb. For the apostles, the reality is Jesus is dead. Yet, these guys in dazzling clothes are saying something else, and suddenly, what was once true (and still is for those who have not yet received the news) is no longer true. Xeno’s paradoxes are examples of how two things can be true at the same time. (The dichotomy paradox is a good example of that; you have to travel half the distance to a goal, then half that distance, then half that distance which will prevent you from ever getting to the goal – like driving across Kansas. But you DO get across eventually.) These paradoxes, quantum mechanics, and Schrödinger’s cat to name a few are good illustrations and special effects that will help MATH smart individuals process the mystery of Jesus’ resurrection.
BODY Smart – [19:06]
For an illustration, talk about how our reflexive fear response works in this story as the women bow to the ground after the men appear to them. The women also run to find the apostles with the news of Jesus’ resurrection, and Peter gets up and goes to the tomb to see for himself. For special effects, try interpretive movement and connect it to the words you select for WORD smart. Liturgical dance would also work here. Do you know anyone who is fluent in sign language? Invite them to sign the passage as it’s read and then teach the congregation some of the signs.
MUSIC Smart – [23:39]
This intelligence is regularly engaged in worship, and we are certain you will have a lot of music playing for your service. Yet, we have an idea to use music as a way to underscore (“score” – get it?) your reading by beginning with lower, darker tones in a minor key, and eventually changing to a major key with brighter tones. Pick particular instruments for the characters in the story, too! For a (kind of) contemporary secular song, try U2’s I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For – the lyrics may convey the searching and longing of the women and Peter, or perhaps for your C&E worshipers.
NATURE Smart – [28:24]
Do you have herbalists or botanists in your congregation? Invite them to talk about the spices used for embalming practices. Here is a link to ancient Egyptian embalming practices and specific plants used. Pull 1 Corinthians 15 into your sermon, and talk about seeds falling into the ground to die and then becoming a plant. The men in dazzling clothes are talking about life that just seems impossible – maybe like the life we have discovered thriving around thermal jets in deep ocean water, or the life that may be waiting to be discovered on distant worlds?
PEOPLE Smart – [33:27]
The male disciples didn’t believe the women. So little has changed, it seems sometimes. Illustrating this point could be powerful; it could be an opportunity to discuss the #MeToo movement, and a chance for people to learn why it is important to listen first. The men in dazzling clothes ask the women why they are looking for the living among the dead – imagine the interaction in this scene. Present this reading as a Reader’s Theater, and use the MUSIC and EYE smart suggestions!
SELF Smart – [38:27]
The fear, confusion, amazement, and frustration in this story may find homes in our individual hearts, because what do we do with this story? How does the transformation of the women lead to an eventual transformation of the apostles? How does that transformation affect our lives? If you have never read The Transforming Moment by James Loder, we recommend it to be very illustrative! For a special effect, send your people home to think about what this story means for them. Also, tell them to come back next week for the second episode!