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Easter 2017 Edition
April, 2017 - Issue #150
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courtesy of Shutterstock

God's Unseen Movement to Restore Life
by Steve Peralta

The Sand Canyon fire, in just a few days, scoured away years of plant growth and left a barren moonscape behind. It seemed life was gone; but it was there, lying beneath the surface, ready to spring forth and start all over again with the winter rains.

This natural process reminds me of the celebration of Easter. At Valencia United Methodist Church, we begin on Thursday with the Last Supper. On Friday, we remember His crucifixion and death. Saturday night, we gather around a campfire to consider what the disciples must have felt like the day after Jesus's death and to proclaim God's unseen movement to restore life.

We then gather on Easter Sunday to sing and celebrate that sin and death have been overcome and how in Jesus, we are given an opportunity to be made new again. We celebrate that no matter the choices we have made or the situations we may be in, God can give us a new start and a new life.

So when you look to the hills and see the green carpet covering the once-barren hillsides, remember that God is always at work below the surface, bringing new life in Christ.

Please join us for our Easter Services
Good Friday April 14 at 7pm
Easter Vigil April 15 at 7pm
Easter Sunday April 16 at 8:30am, 9:45am and 11am
Pastor Steve Peralta of Valencia United Methodist Church 255-1301

Easter Brunch at Oaks Grille
On Sunday, April 16, choose from two seatings - 10:30am and 1:30pm - at Oaks Grille's spring-inspired buffet in celebration of Easter. Bring the family to enjoy face painting, Easter egg hunts and a visit from the Easter Bunny. The buffet will feature made-to-order omelets and waffles; eggs benedict, Alaskan king crab legs, jumbo shrimp cocktail, chef-carved fresh-roasted prime rib, lamb osso bucco over parmesan polenta, seared salmon over wild rice, beef bourganon, roasted chicken breast, mushroom ravioli with baby spinach, kids' corner entrees and assorted desserts. Cost is $65 for adults; children 6 to 12 are $22; kids 5 and under are $6. Reservations are required by April 9.
288-1995, extension 135

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courtesy of Shutterstock

Easter Sunrise
by Pastor Mike Matzek

When I moved to California nine years ago, one of the most pleasant surprises was discovering the joy of outdoor Easter Sunrise Worship. You see, I grew up in the Midwest. When I was a kid, we would attend the early, early Easter service. It was always nice - the choir sang, there was an inspiring message - but the day was always cold and muddy and invariably we had to stay inside.

Since coming to Santa Clarita, my family attends the Sunrise Worship. We gather in the predawn gloom on Easter morning in the church parking lot and walk the quarter mile to the top of the hill that overlooks CalArts just as the sun rises. As we watch the light spread over the valley, its beams hitting the small wooden cross we carry up with us, we sing of Jesus rising from the dead, share communion and pray to God who rescues us from the darkness and death.

Our Sunrise Service is open to the community. We invite you to join us at 6:15am Easter morning at CLC. Dress warmly for the chilly morning. It is a service like no other on a day like no other.
Pastor Mike Matzek is the associate pastor of Christ Lutheran Church. 259-0200

The Master's University Department of Music Presents
"Forest Lawn" Resurrection Week Concerts

Don't miss these concerts, held Wednesday and Thursday, April 12 and April 13, at 7:30pm at the Hall of The Crucifixion-Resurrection at Forest Lawn in Glendale. The concerts will feature John Rutter's "Requiem" along with other works celebrating the resurrection of the Christ and are performed by the University Singers & Orchestra conducted by Dr. Paul T. Plew and Dr. Stephen Opfer. Tickets are complimentary and can be requested online at www.masters.edu/music or by calling The Master's University.
362-2262

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courtesy of Shutterstock

Rebirth the Gift of Easter
"Christ is Alive!" we sing, shout and claim on Easter. The gift of Christ's resurrection means that each of our lives are given the chance to be reborn and remade in the image of God's goodness. Each time we welcome Christ into our lives to bring that life of God, that creative energy that God has been pouring out on us, and creation from the beginning of time - we are given new life. In fact, when we engage in the miracle of Easter we celebrate and rejoice that God, with the resurrection of Christ, stopped the world from flowing from birth to death. Our creative God through Jesus is moving life from birth to death to rebirth. Life in Christ means we don't move from life to death but from death to life. Each day, each moment and each time we live in Christ's life we move into new life.

Celebrate Rebirth
Easter Sunday April 16 at 9am and 11am

Other Lent Services
Palm Sunday Sunday, April 9 at 9am and 11am
Holy Thursday Thursday, April 13 at 7pm
Good Friday Friday, April 14 at 7pm
Santa Clarita United Methodist Church www.scumc.org

To Be Continued...
by Pastor John Koczman

I can remember, when I was a lot younger, that those words would occasionally flash upon the screen at the end of a television show. I would cringe! This meant that I would have to wait a whole week for the story to be completed.
I was not a fan of waiting and I don't think I have become any more of a fan of prolonged or deferred gratification. I would like to get into better shape tomorrow, or lose those pounds tomorrow and pay off those debts yesterday! But then those words of continuation can also be very positive words. When the good stuff in life continues, like the love of a family, the health of friends, or my many blessings, I like that a lot!
Easter reminds us that Jesus Christ is not dead and that His promises of life, salvation, mercy and grace continue every day. They are great words of comfort to assure us that since He loves us, He will be with us today, tomorrow, forever. His work of restoration in my life and yours has not concluded; it continues because His love for us never ends.
BethlehemSCV 252-0622

courtesy of Shutterstock
courtesy of Shutterstock

Celebrate Easter at NorthPark
The Death and Resurrection of Jesus are the two most significant events in human history. Joining millions of others around the world, the NorthPark community will remember and celebrate the God who came to save us by sending Jesus into our broken world.

NorthPark Community Church is excited to invite you to celebrate Holy Week with them this coming Easter season. Kick things off with the annual Palm Sunday services on April 9, which includes their famous Pancake Breakfast - free to everyone who attends!

Then join the journey from the Upper Room to the Cross at the Good Friday Service at 7pm on April 14.

Celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus on Easter Sunday, April 16, at two identical services: 9am and 10:30am. Seating is limited so arrive early for the best seats. There will be an Easter Egg Hunt and Gospel message for all the children. They will have a photographer taking family pictures on Easter morning, too.
NorthPark Community Church is a church that is committed to being Biblically centered, relationship focused and missionally minded. 296-6784




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