Lent (Latin: Quadragesima: Fortieth) is a solemn religious observance in the liturgical calendar that begins on Ash Wednesday and ends approximately six weeks later, before Easter Sunday. The purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer through prayer, doing penance,repentance of sins, alms giving, atonement, and self-denial. This event is observed in the Anglican, Eastern Orthodox, Lutheran, Methodist, and Roman Catholic Churches. Some Anabaptist and evangelical churches also observe the Lenten season. Its institutional purpose is heightened in the annual commemoration of Holy Week, marking the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus, which recalls the tradition and events of the New Testament beginning on Friday of Sorrows, further climaxing on Jesus’ crucifixion on Good Friday, which ultimately culminates in the joyful celebration on Easter Sunday of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.In Lent, many Christians commit to fasting or giving up certain types of luxuries as a form of penance. Many Christians also add a Lenten spiritual discipline, such as reading a daily devotional or praying through a Lenten calendar, to draw themselves near to God. The Stations of the Cross, a devotional commemoration of Christ’s carrying the Cross and of his execution, are often observed. Many Roman Catholic and some Protestant churches remove flowers from their altars, while crucifixes, religious statues, and other elaborate religious symbols are often veiled in violet fabrics in solemn observance of the event. Throughout Christendom, some adherents mark the season with the traditional abstention from the consumption of meat, most notably among Roman Catholics.Lent is traditionally described as lasting for forty days, in commemoration of the forty days Jesus spent fasting in the desert, according to the Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke, before beginning his public ministry, after which he endured temptation by Satan.
The Lenten program this year will take a slightly different shape. Starting with Ash Wednesday (March 1st) we will begin with the Service of the Imposition of Ashes and each Wednesday will look at a program entitled “The best Lent ever are you sabotaging your Happiness?” It will be based on the book by Mathew Kelly “Resisting Happiness” A true story about why we sabotage ourselves, feel overwhelmed, set aside our dreams and lack the courage too simply be ourselves…& how to start choosing happiness again! You may go online and download the program at Dynamic Catholic and go to the series “Best Lent Ever”. Starting with Ash Wednesday you will receive a daily devotional video. You may also purchase the book at this site for free with a charge for shipping and handling. Each Wednesday we will meet for a simple Eucharist at the Church with discussion based on the videos we received that week. Keep watch in the Round Robin as to time of the service. I want to put it out to see which time would suite most people`s needs.
A couple of other things, the Imposition of Ashes will be observed on the First Sunday of Lent as well as Ash Wednesday and we will refrain from decorating the church with flowers during the Season as is customary in keeping with the nature of Lent. You may make a donation to the Flower Fund and donate flowers for Easter as a thanksgiving of memorial.
All the Best in Christ, for a blessed and prosperous Lenten tide as we go forward to greet our Risen Lord on Easter Morning.