Lent means Spring! As I write this, it is a mild winter day, after a storm that closed the church office early and many schools for the day. I appreciate the occasional mild day in the midst of winter; it reminds that spring is not so far off. The official start of spring is just a few weeks away. This year Lent begins on Wednesday, 6 March and we will celebrate the Resurrection of Our Lord on Sunday, 21 April. But before we get to the empty tomb, we must journey through the forty days of Lent, including the special services of Holy Week which mark the events of Jesus’ Last Supper, betrayal, trial, and crucifixion. There can be no resurrection without a preceding death.
Seminarians are often asked in their first preaching class, “What does the cross and resurrection mean to you?” All Christians, throughout their lives, wrestle with this question. Our answer to the question will likely vary depending on our age and life circumstances. We all have an individual spiritual journey as well as the journey we share with the community. Both are important as we consider Jesus’ Passion. (Our mid-week worship will be Services of Reflection and Healing. We begin at 12:05 with a simple soup and bread lunch.) As we move through our Lenten journey with reflection, prayer, and silence, I invite you consider this question as part of the process. What does the cross and resurrection mean to you? – in your daily life, in your family, at work, at school, in volunteer activities, in retirement, in illness, in health? As you think or pray or meditate on Jesus’ Passion, consider what it means to participate in the Holy Eucharist every Sunday. There is not just one correct answer to this. And there are no wrong answers. So, please feel free to share with me. You may also find it energizing to share thoughts and feelings about this with others in the congregation.
I invite you to deepen your spiritual life by attending worship every week. Ash Wednesday worship at Noon and 7:30 pm. We continue our regular weekend schedule with worship on Saturday at 5:00 pm and Sunday mornings at 9:00 and 11:00 am. Plan now to attend the services of Holy Week: Holy Eucharist with Laying on of Hands and Anointing with Oil for Healing on Wednesday, 17 April at Noon; Thursday, 18 April, Maundy Thursday service here at Noon; the Great Three Days of Maundy Thursday, 18 April at 7:30 pm at St. Andrew’s; Good Friday, 19 April at Noon or 7:30 pm, and the Easter Vigil, 20 April 5:00 pm beginning outside (weather permitting) with the new fire, moving into the Parish Hall and concluding in the nave with the first Eucharist of Easter. These services will enhance your celebration of the Resurrection of Our Lord on Sunday, 21 April.
What does the cross and resurrection mean to you? One thought – new life, renewal or starting again are always possible.
May God bless you in during our celebration of Lent.