“Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me.
Do not cast me away from Your presence, and do not take Your holy spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of my salvation, and sustain in me a willing spirit.”
The Time of Lent is upon us. Lent is that forty-day period (not counting Sundays) that culminates with Easter Sunday. The Lenten Season is a time of soul-searching and prayer. We, as Presbyterians, do not generally follow any type of strict guidelines of “denial” as some do in other churches, but Lent is an ideal time to re-focus ourselves as believers before we commemorate the last week of Christ’s life on earth. The number of days in Lent (forty) reminds us of Noah and the ark, the journey of the Hebrews in the wilderness, and the temptations of Jesus.
The time of Lent begins on February 14 with Ash Wednesday, a “holy day” that began centuries ago. In both the Old Testament and the early church, penitents placed ashes on their heads as a symbol of their repentance. The practice of receiving ashes on the forehead in the sign of the cross became common in the 10th and 11th centuries to signal that repentance had begun. The placing of ashes on the forehead is often accompanied by the words of Genesis 3:10 — “Remember, that you are dust, and unto dust you shall return.” The Ash Wednesday service sets the tone for the entire Lenten Season.
During this special time, we hope to provide meaningful worship services that reflect not only our repentance and submission, but also God’s amazing grace and mercy as seen through Jesus Christ. Here are some special worship days to mark on your calendar:
February 18 Ash Wednesday Service at 7:00 p.m.
March 10 Lenten Spiritual Retreat, 8:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
March 25 Passion/Palm Sunday – WONDROUS LOVE, Chancel Choir Lenten Cantata with Chamber Orchestra at 11:00 a.m.
March 29 Seder Dinner and Maundy Thursday Service
March 30 Good Friday – Day of Prayer
April 1 Easter Sunday – Sunrise Service at 7:00 a.m. / Combined Morning Worship at 11:00 a.m. with the Chancel Choir, Handbells, Santa Fe Winds and the Mustard Seed Worship Team
In God’s love,