A Reflection by Fred Bogert

Christ is risen. Christ is risen, indeed. Three days. Stone rolled away. Mary at the tomb. That guy on the road to Emmaus. I have to know this stuff. I’m an ordained minister. It’s Easter time. Or is it Easter tide? Twelve disciples, scars, Thomas, what did he say? Which translation… Greek, Latin, certainly not Aramaic! And then it was my turn… to present my groceries to the checkout lady at Valu Market. I couldn’t see her smile behind the mask, but I could feel it. She knew I wasn’t fully present. I bet this wasn’t the first time today that she received the groceries of a masked escapee from quarantine. Nervous, off-center, in a hurry to escape back to safety.

And then it happened. I reached for my billfold into an empty pocket. My Bible study ended with a screech, to be immediately replaced by my confession: “I’m so sorry, ma’am, but I left my wallet at home.” Before I could stammer any further she said, “That’s all right, sir. I’ll set these aside and you can go get it. No worries.” This from a gal who was working in a global pandemic, risking her life to help folks have food on the table and hide out in safe places while she worked. I mumbled my sincerest “Thank you” of the moment and set out for the car in an adrenaline-fueled trot.

I’m lucky. I live three blocks from Valu Market. In a flash, I re-parked and jogged back to the counter in time to see the line part like the Red Sea to let me pay for and claim my groceries. So, she had cohorts in this mission of mercy. Well, there it was—the twelve (or were there more) disciples standing aside to watch Christ alive in the grocery lady behind the counter receive my confession and assure me of pardon, not to mention bagging my groceries while I was gone.

Christ is risen. Christ is risen, indeed.