Easter Sonrises

By Colonel Richard Munn

At the crack of dawn across the verdant breadth of the USA Eastern Territory on Easter Sunday morning a veritable platoon of brass bands and ensembles greeted the rising sun and the gathered chilly faithful with the distinct and rallying call of brass instruments.

From ‘Christ the Lord Is Risen Today!’ to ‘He Lives!,’ and more, this is the ideal environment for brass deployment, the historic and original intention for the use of brass bands – strategic and versatile use outdoors. The sharp sound of brass cuts through the bracing cold and is effective in a way that a whole range of other instrumentation cannot be. It may even serve to remind us of the trumpet sound that will one day accompany the 2nd return of Christ. (1 Thess. 4:16)

The characteristic ecumenical vigor of The Salvation Army often means that we are in the planning and leading roles for such gatherings with fellow congregations and denominations, with assemblies ranging from small clusters to large crowds.

Indeed, the sheer consistency and commitment of corps, locals and musicians now means that such early morning Easter Sunday gatherings now stretch back well into the decades, a herald for the Easter celebrations to follow throughout the day. Breakfast, floral displays, cantatas, enrollments and larger-than-normal congregational gatherings will all likely ensue.

The eclectic variety of locations is nothing short of creative, a beach, a mountain top, a park and a rooftop. Just look at this partial list:

  • Eagle Rock Reservation, Montclair, NJ

  • Ocean Park Beach, Old Orchard Beach, ME

  • Center Memorial Park, Manchester, CT

  • Wollaston Beach, Quincy Temple, MA

  • Rising Sun Avenue, Philadelphia Citadel, PA

  • Niagara River, Niagara Falls, NY

  • Brodhead Creek Park, East Stroudsburg, PA

  • Lafayette Avenue campus, CFOT, Suffern, NY

  • Smith Park, Middletown, OH

  • Lexington Cemetery, Lexington, KY

  • Rooftop, Retired Officer Apts., Asbury Park, NJ

So, how about it? Make a plan now for Easter Sunday 2024, to get up early and in the dark, join with colleague salvationists and fellow believers and sing and play ‘Up From The Grave He Arose,’ as the sun rises over the horizon.

Now that’s Easter glory.