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resized image Promo 40For Reuben Watt, Moderator of the United Reformed Church Youth Assembly, Easter Sunday would normally consist of eating lots of chocolate and hot cross buns, spending time with his extended family, going for a walk or doing an Easter egg hunt and, of course, attending church in Reigate. In this reflection for Easter Sunday, Reuben explains what he will be doing instead and the true meaning of Easter.

For all of us this year, gathering at church will not be possible. Instead we can listen to or watch one of the many URC live services or recordings or take part in the Daily Devotions’ digital Sunday services.

I am sure that many of us have experienced many sermons and reflections that look at the Easter story, but at a time where we are all in lockdown, is it worth just looking at the basics of what the Easter story really is about?

Read more: Easter Sunday: Rejoice! Jesus conquers the grave

resized image Promo 39Simon Peters, Project Manager for Walking the Way: Living the life of Jesus today, the United Reformed Church’s focus on lifelong missional discipleship, uses Matthew 26:17-30 to offer this reflection for Maundy Thursday.

In the same way we might think of Sunday lunch or Christmas dinner, the Passover meal and all its associated rituals and traditions would have been known well to the disciples, and the opportunity to celebrate it together with the Son of God, their respected leader and teacher, would have made it all the more special.

Read more: Maundy Thursday: God is with us

resized image Promo 37The Moderators of the General Assembly of the United Reformed Church (URC) have expressed shock and sadness at the Islamophobic and xenophobic comments made after the BBC started to broadcast Friday prayers for followers of Islam on local radio stations.

The early morning broadcasts started on BBC local radio stations on 3 April for Muslims unable to visit their mosques during the coronavirus crisis.

Read more: URC expresses shock at reactions to BBC Friday prayers broadcasts

resized image Promo 38In an unprecedented move, church leaders came together on 1 April to listen to and support each other during the coronavirus pandemic.

Topics discussed by the leaders, who met by video conference, included online worship, pastoral care in hospitals, funeral arrangements in various places, along with information on furlough arrangements being considered by some churches.

Supported by churches in membership of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland, along with Churches Together in England, Cytun, ACTS, and the Irish Council of Churches, the leaders issued a joint Holy Week statement:

Read more: Church leaders united in response to coronavirus pandemic

A still of St Mary the Virgin Church Times Square on a Palm Sunday procession in Times Square YouTubeAs the UK population practises a range of measures to social distance from each other, Roo Stewart, Programme Support Officer for the United Reformed Church’s (URC) Church and Society work and member of the Joint Public Issues Team, uses Matthew 21:1-17 to ask if Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem is still relevant in this reflection for Palm Sunday.

Read more: Palm Sunday: Is Jesus’ triumphal entry still relevant?