The season of Lent is the 40 day period (plus Sundays) leading up to Easter. Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, which is today, and ends on Maundy Thursday in Holy Week. It is an intentional time of preparation for Christian people to anticipate and fully participate in Easter. Many people fast from something or add something to their daily walk that aids in reminding and therefore deepening their relationship with Christ.
Let me encourage you to do just that. Maybe you want to fast from social media or TV or a food item? Or maybe you are led to read your Bible and pray daily? Whatever it is, know that intentionality and perseverance is the key. I will be posting daily devotional thoughts on the blog if you would like to participate in that way. Make sure you check back daily or even sign up for the posts to be delivered to your email inbox.
As we begin our Lenten season, the following is a liturgy of invitation from The Book of Common Prayer.
Dear People of God: The first Christians observed with great devotion the days of our Lord’s passion and resurrection, and it became the custom of the Church to prepare for them by a season of penitence and fasting. This season of Lent provided a time in which converts to faith were prepared for Holy Baptism. It was also a time when those who, because of notorious sins, had been separated from the body of the faithful were reconciled by penitence and forgiveness, and restored to the fellowship of the Church. Thereby, the whole congregation was put in mind of the message of pardon and absolution set forth in the Gospel of our Savior, and of the need which all Christians continually have to renew their repentance and faith.
I invite you, therefore, in the name of the Church, 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. Amen.