Ash Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Dear Friends,
The Season of Lent is now upon us, truly a ‘gift of God for the people of God.’ How will you make use of this ‘gift’ this year? Here are some of the ways available to all of us this year:
First, Our ‘Ash Wednesday Service’ takes place tomorrow, March 1 at 6:00 pm. This service marks the beginning of our Lenten Journey and is one of the highlights of our liturgical year. Plan now on coming to the service with a sense of anticipation and sincerity.
Second, We have produced a number of aids to help you in mapping out your own plan for Lent:
  • Jennifer has several suggestions for parents with small children to celebrate Lent together at home (all of these are found on the resource table in the Fellowship Hall);
  • She has also crafted a way that our ‘Home Groups’ can live out Lent together in an active and reflective way (Small group leaders are requested to pick up the ‘packet’ for your group. also found on the resource table;
  • I have produced a simple form that will guide you in crafting your own Lenten discipline. I will be speaking on this during the Ash Wednesday service.
  • The Daily Office lectionary for Lent has been produced (together with the ‘Forms for Family Prayers’); please make sure you pick up your copy this week.
Third, in response to my ‘Call to Prayer’ this Lent, we will have a weekly ‘Service of Prayer’ on Saturday evenings from 5:00 – 6:00 p.m. The first service takes place this Saturday, March 4 in the sanctuary.
This service will have two major components:
  • First, an extended time of personal reflection and meditation about the things of your life- ‘the things you have done which you ought not to have done, and the things you have done which you ought not to have done’–which will lead to ‘true repentance’ and the experience of grace and forgiveness;
  • Second, an extended time of intercession– for yourself and those you love, for others, and especially for our church as we seek to ‘live into the vision’ that God has given us.
I would encourage all of us to commit to coming to at least one of these five services during Lent; not only will you be encouraged in so doing, but will be an encouragement to others.
What a great time of year.
Let us resolve to open our ears and our hearts to God’s gracious invitation to celebrate a ‘Holy Lent’.
Looking forward to worshiping with you tomorrow.