Lent is upon us! No, not the kind that comes out of the dryer (or your bellybutton!). Lent is a time period during the church year, specifically the six weeks before Easter. Each year, Easter falls on a different date. According to thoughtco.com, ‘At the heart of the matter lies a simple explanation. Easter is a movable feast. The earliest believers in the church of Asia Minor wished to keep the observance of Easter correlated to the Jewish Passover. The death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ happened after the Passover, so followers wanted Easter always to be celebrated after the Passover. And, since the Jewish holiday calendar is based on solar and lunar cycles, each feast day is movable, with dates shifting from year to year.’ This year Easter falls relatively late, on Sunday, April 21. This means that Lent begins on Wednesday, March 6, which is called Ash Wednesday. In the early church, Lent was a time for new believers to prepare themselves for membership in the church, and more recently it has been a time when Christians focus on the meaning of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, in preparation for Easter.
This Lent, our theme is ‘Cultivating and Letting Go.’ Together we will explore what must be cultivated within ourselves to further God’s work through us. We will also contemplate letting go of things that may be hindering our positive influence in the world.
We will begin with a special service on Ash Wednesday. There will be readings, songs, times of silence, and chances to move around and explore different prayer stations before we are marked with the sign of the cross and sent forth. This service is appropriate for all ages!
During Sunday worship the following five weeks, we will explore different guideposts for cultivating and letting go. These will include:
CULTIVATING GRATITUDE AND JOY –LETTING GO OF SCARCITY
CULTIVATING INTUITION AND TRUSTING FAITH –LETTING GO OF THE NEED FOR CERTAINTY
CULTIVATING CREATIVITY –LETTING GO OF COMPARISON
CULTIVATING CALM AND STILLNESS –LETTING GO OF ANXIETY AS A LIFESTYLE
CULTIVATING LAUGHTER, SONG, AND DANCE –LETTING GO OF BEING COOL AND “ALWAYS IN CONTROL”
I hope that as we enter this season and prepare our hearts and spirits for the resurrection of Jesus, you will come and experience the cultivating and letting go, and that you will be enriched!