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Discussing religion, spirituality and values. Amy Umble is the religion reporter for The Free Lance-Star. You can email her at
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Happy Easter




As a religion reporter, I spend Holy Week focusing on the last week of Jesus’ life, which involves a lot of suffering. Personally, it was a really rough week, too, so when I got home from Good Friday services, I was pretty grumpy–which probably wasn’t the point. "Good Friday is really depressing," I muttered.

"But you know how the story ends," my husband said, referring to Easter, the happy ending for Christians.

I didn’t know why there even had to be suffering, and I didn’t really want to wait for the celebration.

Turns out I got to celebrate early. Fredericksburg Baptist Church held an Easter egg hunt for the refugees. Photobucket

Those who came turned it into an impromptu worship and healing service on the yards of the church’s group homes for adults with disabilities. By the end, the kids were the only ones not crying. First, the newcomers sang for nearly an hour, about following Jesus and the goodness of God. Photobucket

A refugee read from the Bible and talked about how Jesus performed miracles in the New Testament times and still does today. I cannot imagine the faith it must take to believe in miracles when you’ve fled your country, fearing for your life, only to spend 30 years in a camp, struggling for food and still not completely safe. Then, all the refugee adults got in a circle and prayed to bless and heal the adults who live in the group homes. Afterward, a blind man with autism sang The Lord’s Prayer. Photobucket

 Then it was time for the Easter egg hunt and eating Easter cake. The celebration was the whole point but seemed like an afterthought. I was just grateful to spend my time before Easter with two groups of people who really help me understand the idea of resurrection. Photobucket


  • Fredtastic


    Thanks for the blog – I wanted to comment on your statement about having the faith to believe in miracles for many of these refugees who have had such a difficult life. I think it is the tragedy and torment that gives them the faith to believe. When you are forced to continually deal with situations that are out of your control, believers have nothing but faith to rely on. We in the West have little faith because we so often have very little out of our immediate control. And we translate that into – God doesn’t care, God doesn’t perform miracles, there is no God. These wonderful people have had to rely on their faith to provide for them.