The Wounds of Easter

The Wounds of Easter


Rev. Timothy Haut has been the Pastor of the First Congregational Church (UCC) in Deep River, CT since 1980, and in June celebrated 50 years of ordained ministry in the UCC.   He has written a book entitled A Deep River Year,  and also writes poetry which is included in each week’s worship.

Scripture: John 20:19-31 (NRSV)

Jesus Appears to the Disciples

When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you.’ After he said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, ‘Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.’ When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.’

Jesus and Thomas

But Thomas (who was called the Twin), one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, ‘We have seen the Lord.’ But he said to them, ‘Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe.’

A week later his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were shut, Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you.’ Then he said to Thomas, ‘Put your finger here and see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it in my side. Do not doubt but believe.’ Thomas answered him, ‘My Lord and my God!’ Jesus said to him, ‘Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe.’

The Purpose of This Book

Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book. But these are written so that you may come to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that through believing you may have life in his name.

Reflection: The Wounds of Easter


The long story of Thomas’ experience of the resurrection always appears on the Sunday after Easter. For some of us, this is “low Sunday,” when it’s nice to get a guest preacher for our pulpits so that we can do a little post-holiday recuperation.  As a result, Thomas’ encounter with the risen Christ may seem like a secondary tale, an after-thought, a curious narrative of the doubter who finally came to see the reality of the risen Christ.

But the truth is that Christ didn’t rise whole and perfect. He came out of the tomb with wounds still scarring his hands and feet and side for Thomas to touch. These ugly marks of suffering and death are a gift for all of us who ever feel the brokenness of the world, for all of us who ever weep and wonder if God really knows our pain.   

The Wounds of Easter
Who could know Christ
without the wounds
to touch, to see?
It is not the glory,
the victor's crown,
that makes us come
and fling ourselves
into his outstretched arms.
But the tear-streaked,
the bruised, the heart-broken ones,
those who are afflicted
with a senseless joy,
see first the scars
of this blessed and battered lord,
then run to him,
run to him.
--Timothy Haut


Easter God, stretch out your wounded hands to us, and bless us with a resurrection. Hold us close enough to feel the beating heart of love, which heals us.  Amen.

New Prayer Requests:

We ask churches and church leaders to join us in the following prayers either by sharing them during worship, printing them in bulletins, or sharing them in some other way. To make a prayer request, please contact Marlene Gasdia-Cochrane at

Prayers of Intercession:

  • For the people of Ukraine whose lives continue to be shattered by war.
  • For those grieving or suffering due to the ~11,000 gun violence deaths that happened in the US since the start of the new year.
  • For those affected by the continuing rash of tornadoes and violent storms in the South.

Prayers of Joy and Thanksgiving:

This Week in History:

April 10, 1866 (137 years ago): The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) is founded   [History

“Study the past if you would define the future.”

Tim E. Haut

is the pastor of the First Congregational Church in Deep River, keeper of an open gate.

April 10, 2023
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