When the Sabbath was past, Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of James and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him. 2 And very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they went to the tomb. 3 And they were saying to one another, “Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance of the tomb?” 4 And looking up, they saw that the stone had been rolled back—it was very large. 5 And entering the tomb, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, dressed in a white robe, and they were alarmed. 6 And he said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You seek Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has risen; he is not here. See the place where they laid him. 7 But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going before you to Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.” 8 And they went out and fled from the tomb, for trembling and astonishment had seized them, and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid. Mark 16:1-8
The angel preaches the Gospel to the scared women, and they in turn run to proclaim it to the apostles, becoming "apostles to the apostles."
Remember, Jesus said in John 14, "But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you." Just a housewife's musings, but it seems to me evidence here that the birth of the Church was at Christ's death, not at Pentecost. The Holy Spirit immediately "brought to mind" what Jesus had said here at the Resurrection scene, even before he had ascended.Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but has risen. Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee, that the Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men and be crucified and on the third day rise." And they remembered his words.
What do you think? I had suggested in my Pentecost post to make a birthday cake for the Church, but now I'm not sure saying Pentecost is the church's birthday is accurate (not WRONG, just not accurate). I also am persuaded by the beautiful image of the New Adam's Bride created from his rib (Blood and Water) at his death, just as Eve was made from Adam's rib. The Church was born when the atoning sacraments spilled forth on the world, and the Holy Spirit immediately began working in her individual members (Peter's sorrow when the cock crowed, etc.)
Ok, back on topic...
- Older children (or moms and dads) can do a little research on who exactly these women were, and explain the apparent contradiction of the Gospel account (did they go straight to the Apostles or not?) There are many great resources explaining the different details of the Resurrection story, and how these details in fact do not contradict. What did you find? Both the Treasury of Daily Prayer and Lutheran Study Bible would be helpful.
- Research the practice of anointing the dead with spices in Hebrew and other ancient (or modern) cultures.