We are exactly two weeks away from Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent. Like so many things in life – birthdays, wedding anniversaries, Christmas . . . Valentine's Day – Lent can sneak up on us and surprise us with its arrival. We have been lucky this year in that we had a long Epiphany season, allowing us the space to recover, breathe, and prepare. But it is coming, so consider these next two weeks your time of preparation.
In the Ash Wednesday service we are invited to the observance of a holy Lent “by self-examination and repentance; by prayer, fasting, and self-denial; and by reading and meditating on God's holy Word.” If we are to do that properly, intentionally, and successfully, it would be a good thing to use these next two weeks and consider how we might live into that Lenten invitation.
One thing that people have both asked about and been interested in is the resumption of a Monday night adult education forum. And I have been looking for a way to offer more opportunities for worship. I think I have found the answer to both.
Beginning Monday, March 6 (the first Monday in Lent), I will offer a service of Evening Prayer every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, from 5:30 to no later than 6:00 p.m. My overall hope is that this service can be lead by others in the parish, as well as it becoming the vehicle for an occasional Evensong service led by members of either the parish choir or one of our two children's choirs.
If you are looking for a way to pray and meditate on God's holy Word, I would urge you to consider adding at least one of these services to your schedule.
And then on Mondays after Evening Prayer, I will resume the practice of a Monday night education forum. This will follow immediately after Evening Prayer, beginning at 6:00 and, depending on how much people talk, ending by 7:00 or 7:30 p.m. at the latest.
I've also heard from several people that they are looking for a confirmation class. With that in mind, the first education piece will be what I call “TEC101, or, A Class Leading to Confirmation.” If you have no interest in being confirmed but would like to know more about the Episcopal Church, I invite you to attend. If you would like to be confirmed, this is where you will want to spend your Mondays for the next several weeks. And if you are a cradle Episcopalian but just want a refresher course, this is also a good place to be.
So if you are looking for a way to incorporate more study into your Lenten discipline, I invite you to participate in the Monday education forum.
There are two weeks until Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent. Instead of it sneaking up on you and then trying to find a way to fit something into your schedule, may I suggest taking these last two weeks of Epiphany to prepare for a schedule change so that you will be ready for
Evening Prayer: M, Tu, Th, F
5:30 – 6:00 p.m.
Monday Education Forum: 6:00 – 7:00/30 p.m.
TEC101, or, A Class Leading to Confirmation