In Essentials, Unity; In Nonessentials, Liberty; In All Things, Love.
Over its 500-plus year history, the Moravian Church has developed unique, deeply-held traditions. The Lovefeast, the Moravian Star, beeswax candles, special services, music and lore all help make up the rich heritage of the Moravian Church. Many of these customs arose from expressions of faith and worship of early Moravians; they continue to have significance in how Moravians live into their love of Christ. Here are just a few:
At Moravian churches across the Northern and Southern Provinces, Easter morning is an especially wondrous time. In the sometimes chilly early morning, Moravians greet the rising sun in their God’s Acres, with hymns, horns and a resounding, “The Lord has risen… The Lord has risen indeed!”
According to an article from the Northern Province Moravian Archives’ series “This Month in Moravian History,” the traditions of the Sunrise Service date back 280 years.
In the early morning of Easter Sunday 1732 the young men of Herrnhut, Germany, gathered in the cemetery on the hill overlooking their Moravian community to celebrate the resurrection of Christ. It was the first Moravian sunrise service. The next year the service was held for the entire congregation. The Easter morning sunrise service has become one of the characteristic liturgical traditions in the Moravian Church.
Saturday, May 25 – Psalm 68:28-35
Proverbs 18; 2 Corinthians 1:23-2:13
The Lord filled Zion with justice and righteousness; he will be the stability of your times, abundance of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge. Isaiah 33:5-6
From his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. John 1:16
Almighty God, we live in a time of great instability. We do not understand why people around the world must struggle with poverty, illness, famine, violence, and hatred. Trusting in your abundant and gracious wisdom, show us what we can do to right the world’s wrongs. Amen.
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Count Zinzendorf speaks once again in this collection of sermons preached during his sojourn in Pennsylvania in the 1740s. These sermons, translated by Craig Atwood and Julie Tomberlin Weber, will touch your heart as they did those who heard them more than 250 years ago.