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April 10, 2020

An Easter Message


“And Many Were Blessed!”


Peace National Black Presbyterian Caucus Beloved Community,

Grace and peace to you. Many were, are and will be blessed from the saving act of one person. On a Friday many years ago, a man named Jesus was crucified and died on a cross. That Friday was one of the saddest days in our church’s history. That day, we now know as Good Friday, was a day where evil was an apparent victor over good and darkness ruled over light. Conversely, on Easter Sunday we pass over darkness to light, we praise the conquest of evil over goodness. Light has triumphed eternal victory over darkness. Goodness has secured an eternal victory over evil. Life eternal is now victory over death. These victories were not apparent or provisional, they were permanent. And many were blessed.

Today we are experiencing the dreadful impact COVID–19. We witness our sisters and brothers grieving the deaths of tens of thousands COVID–19 victims. We have also witnessed the courageous acts of other sisters and brothers sacrificing themselves while saving even more tens of thousands of lives. Because of their selfless giving, we see humanity and love in action. And many were blessed.

Without a doubt, we are living in trying and suffering times, but I remain hopeful about our future. Because I have been blessed by the saving act of one man many years ago, I am hopeful. Because of the unselfish giving of our essential workers, I am hopeful. Because of all of you who are showing your love by staying at home and isolating yourselves to save lives, I am hopeful. I remain hopeful and I owe my optimism to the faith in which I believe and the faith that unites all of us. We are truly unified through our concerns for our sisters and brothers. And many were blessed.

Paul reminds us in Romans 5:1–11 (NRSV), “We also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint.” Friends, it is while we suffer through the effects of COVID–19, our courage lies in our ability to boast in hope, in our suffering and in God. Keep hope alive by being a witness to God’s saving act on Good Friday. And many were blessed.

It is my hope that as we navigate through our own fear and anxiety, you will trust that God walks with us in every time of trial. It is my continued prayer that you are comforted by God’s presence of love and peace. I encourage you to bless God’s people by speaking out and speaking up on the adverse effects of COVID–19. If we are silent, we fail God’s people and we fail to realize God’s beloved community.

And remember my sisters and brothers, the stone was rolled away. And many were blessed!

He Has Risen Indeed! Hallelujah!


Thomas H. Priest, Jr.
National Black Presbyterian Caucus, President