Posts Tagged 'Easter'

“Mary Magdalene” – a movie worth seeing

Just back from seeing the movie Mary Magdalene. For me, somewhere between 3.5 and 4 Stars (out of 5). I disagree with those reviews that have poured cold water on the movie. For me, overall, it was  faithful to the biblical narrative (and where it wasn’t that wasn’t of great importance … no deal-breaker); it certainly made prominent Mary’s evolving sense of “call” to discipleship and that of “witness”, elevated the inbreaking kingdom of God to being a key thrust of Jesus and his ministry and made clear Mary’s spiritual, somewhat mystic devotion to the cause of Christ.

Very much a movie through Mary’s eyes and heart.  Garth Davis (think Lion) did well with his crew of “getting inside” who Mary may well have been, for down the centuries she has been portrayed in one of two extremes (albeit with some overlap) – devoted “apostle to the apostles” or a reformed prostitute.  Nothing in the movie to suggest either!

A highlight for me – without giving too much away – were a variety of “baptismal” segments and allusions.

Yes, Mary Magdalene plodded at times, especially early on, but maybe we’re too used to those triumphant gallop-along biblical dramas of the past or those highly sanitised films. There was commendable character devopment portrayed in Mary, Jesus, Peter and Judas. Dale and invited Church folk from Wellers Hill-Tarragindi UC to join us. Pleased a group did. Nice to debrief over lunch afterwards. Should do this sort of thing again. “Paul”?

Mary Magdalene? Go see it.

Easter blessings,



Love you (song for The Cross)

having recently reflected that my songwriting over the decades has been “light on” with Good Friday /crucifixion/The Cross songs … I’ve just written a simple children’s song (though with possibly wider uses).  It’s called Love you.  Our local church kids club focusses on the crucifixion these next two Thursdays.  I’m sure that’s connected with the Spirit-initiative behind it all :-).  Backing track demo has been done somewhat hastily via Garage Band … excuse the roughness around the edges, folks.   Seems that’s surely OK for any song on this theme.  I’ve kept the basic song deliberately simple. See what you think.

Blessings of this Lenten, Cross-reaching season.

vocal (in Em)
mp3 backing(with melody)

Jesus died on a cross for you
Jesus died on a cross for me
Jesus died on a cross for everyone
… because he loves us

Jesus died on a cross for you
Jesus died on a cross for me
Jesus died on a cross for everyone
… and there forgive us

Jesus died on a cross for you
Jesus died on a cross for me
Jesus died on a cross for everyone
… and we will love you
We will love you
We will love you

David MacGregor
© 2018 Willow Publishing

When I survey the wondrous cross (What love for us)

Well, it’s my birthday!
Not every birthday one finalises a song about death and crucifixion.
Anyhow, that’s what I’ve done – a new setting for Isaac Watts’ Good Friday classic: When I Survey the Wondrous Cross.
It’s in a minor key and with a bridge added. I woke up from an afternoon nap with much of the song in my head, having gone to sleep with it in my head. It stayed there.  Hopefully a good sign!!

I’ve long pondered how comparatively speaking I’ve written few Easter songs … even less for Good Friday. Maybe it’s because there’s so much great material “out there” – both traditional and contemporary. Why write something new?!

Rather than lyrically getting hung up on atonement theories and the like, I wrote a bridge which more than anything shares my faith that on the cross, Jesus – in the ultimate act of love, sheer love, takes on our brokenness and frailty.

Not that I don’t like the traditional setting – it’s my favourite Good Friday hymn.  Hopefully this new setting does Watts’ timeless lyrics justice.  Feel free to use, with appropriate CCLI attribution.
Blessings, David

mp3 vocal (in Gm) 
mp3 backing (flute melody)

1. When I survey the wondrous cross
On which the Prince of glory died,
My richest gain I count but loss,
And pour contempt on all my pride.

Forbid it, Lord, that I should boast,
Save in the death of Christ my God!
All the vain things that charm me most,
I sacrifice them to His blood.

See from His head, His hands, His feet,
Sorrow and love flow mingled down!
Did e’er such love and sorrow meet,
Or thorns compose so rich a crown?

Jesus, what love for us
Jesus, in dying for us
Jesus, forgiving us
On the cross, your pain
Love in our brokenness
Love in our hopelessness
Love in pure awesomeness
That we’d know life again

Were the whole realm of nature mine,
That were a present far too small;
Love so amazing, so divine,
Demands my soul, my life, my all.

traditional words: Isaac Watts
music & bridge: David MacGregor  © 2018 Willow Publishing

Easter Day sermon … “Resurrection Evidence”

Screen Shot 2014-04-17 at 6.18.40 amChrist is risen!

Thought I’d post my Easter Day sermon, with acknowledgement & thanks to both Diana Butler Bass (for helpful Sojourners “Preaching the Word” piece) and In Eastern Time, the old Easter song of mine I blogged about a few days back.


The most powerful reminder though. It’s when we who know the reality of the risen Christ for ourselves, we share that breaking-out transforming love with and beyond all whose paths intersect ours. We are the evidence.

Easter blessings,

Resurrection Evidence [John 20 1-18]



In Easter Time … a song from long ago & great new video


This hasn’t been my healthiest week … and not the ideal for Holy Week and then the Easter weekend. Hopefully on the mend now.
Life is full of irony for all of us, and so to for me these past days. As I’ve felt far from “alive” these past days – taking a funeral this morning amid my head-chest-sore throat cold state is further irony – I’ve started reflecting on some Easter Day themes and thoughts.


Out of the blue – for I haven’t used the song for decades, I recalled a song I wrote in the early 1980s, called In Easter Time. I probably wrote it for an all-age worship service.. Words and leadsheet link down the screen.  I especially recalled the final lines:

All that’s alive in Jesus loving us
breaks out in Easter time.

In my totally biased opinion, those are among the best couple of lines of lyric I’ve written.

Here’s the lyrics …    leadsheet

When I think of this Easter time:
its bunny, its eggs and its fun
and look on further beyond the thrills
I see just what we’ve undone
For Easter time is Jesus dying
Living to love us again. Cos
All that’s alive in Jesus loving us
Breaks out in Easter time.
All that’s alive in Jesus loving us
Breaks out in Easter time.

The weary caterpillar ends
its time – a small cocoon,
to greet the world – a new butterfly
living a brand new tune.
And Jesus takes the pain of our own world
himself and dies
to come alive, yes Jesus loving us
Breaks out in Easter time.
All that’s alive in Jesus loving us
Breaks out in Easter time.             © David MacGregor 1981

What prompted my recollection of In Easter Time was my reflecting over and over (in my unhealthy stupor!) on a wonderful new video clip put out by the Uniting Church here in Queensland. I’m looking forward to using it this Sunday.

The reflecting goes on.  Blessings of this most holy of seasons be yours.


Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 687 other followers

RSS Journey fast-news

  • An error has occurred; the feed is probably down. Try again later.


RSS Theolog:”The Christian Century”

  • An error has occurred; the feed is probably down. Try again later.

%d bloggers like this: