My Easter Celebrations

I’ve had two great Easter celebrations:  One in the classroom with my students, explaining to them the religious and secular traditions of this day, and then with the Chinese church community in Luzhou.

Easter lessons had us learning the meaning of this day for Christians, including religious symbols, and then the following week, taking care of the secular aspects of the day, such as the Easter bunny, chocolate eggs, coloring eggs, and Easter egg hunts.

My display at home, which were comprised of all my classroom props.

I took a lily stalk to class, which included a drawing to see who took home the lily. Everyone, however, received an Easter seal of a lily. Thank you to all who send those to me every year! They make everyone’s day.

 

Students in English Corner hear about Easter culture celebrations

Drawing symbols of Easter on the board is a great way to remember our lesson

 

Palm-Passion Sunday and Easter Sunday

The Luzhou Protestant Church, built in 1913 and still going strong today.

Once again, being a member of the choir truly made my celebrations for Easter extremely special.

Our Chinese Luzhou church now has Palm-Passion Sunday, which was quite moving.  We had many readings by 5 pastors, 2 who were visiting, and our two choirs (the elderly choir and our adult choir) gave our well-rehearsed anthems.

Our adult choir really had to work hard on that one:  2 1/2 hours of practice on Thursday night, then an extra hour in the morning from 8:30 – 9:30 before our director felt we were truly prepared and ready for worship.

The  Palm-Passion service ran 3 hours.  Many of the congregation and choir were so moved by the readings and our fervent prayers that they cried.  We had many packets of tissues being passed throughout the choir and the congregation during our Passion-Palm Sunday.

Here are a few visuals.

Easter Sunday 

The entire week before Easter had worship being held every morning, at 9:30, for those who could attend.  Choir practice was held for us as usual on Thursday night.  No special services that evening, just the choir going over the anthem for Sunday.  Fortunately for me, our choir was singing a medley of familiar hymn tunes for me:  He Arose, He Lives and The Old Rugged Cross.  Just getting through the Chinese characters was a challenge, as always.  Interestingly enough, the choir members had trouble not with the Chinese but with the tunes.  Some Western tunes are not as familiar to the Chinese as they are for us.  While the men struggled (and I mean really struggled!) to get the notes, I was the lead for the sopranos as I had all the right notes just not the right words sometimes.

Our cooperative efforts worked out well for practice but I must say that for our actual worship, we fell flat, literally and figuratively.

Such are choirs everywhere, I’m sure.

Practice before our Easter Sunday service had us ironing out the right notes for our medley.

Easter itself, despite our anthem errors, was jubilant, especially as we had an exuberant message, baptisms, communion and stir-fried rice noodles plus a hard-boiled Easter egg were served to the entire congregation afterwards.

We started earlier on Easter Sunday so as to finish by noon.   Over 800 were in attendance.

42 adults were baptized.

Our communion went very fast, with plenty of communion ushers serving everyone in the sanctuary.

Our church ladies certainly were busy cooking up huge vats of rice noodles all morning, plus boiling over 1,000 eggs the day before so everyone could receive an Easter egg before they left.

There was also the regular evening service for the young people from 7 – 9 p.m. I don’t usually attend the evening service but I received video and photo postings on my phone of the service.

In other words, a really bustling Eastertime at the Luzhou Protestant Church.

Hope all of you had a great Easter, too.

About connieinchina

I have been in the Asia region for 18 years as an English language teacher. 13 of those have been spent with the Amity Foundation, a Chinese NGO that works in all areas of development for the Chinese people. Amity teachers are placed at small colleges throughout China as instructors of English language majors in the education field. In other words, my students will one day be English teachers themselves in their small villages or towns once they graduate. Currently, this is my second year in Guangxi Province at the 3-year college, Guangxi Normal University for Nationalities. The college is located in smalltown longzhou, 1 hour from the Vietnam border.
This entry was posted in Easter Celebrations in China, From Along the Yangtze, Tales from Sichuan's Yangtze Rivertown, Luzhou, Travel. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to My Easter Celebrations

  1. Kate Lindsay says:

    Connie, this was a great blog note…..I’ve sent it on to my sister in El Dorado, KS who directs the choir at 1st UMC. I thought her choir members would enjoy your comments and photos. I, also, mentioned you were always grateful for stickers/pencils, ect focused around the holdisays for your students. Hope can play the piano, organ, or flute, too.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s