Ash Wednesday Services
February 22 • 12 p.m. & 7 p.m., Chapel (in-person only)
Ash Wednesday begins the season of Lent – a time of introspection and self-examination of our lives and relationship with God. The ritual of the ashes represent a visual reminder of the day as we pause to remember our physical limits in contrast to the infinity of God. Here at First UMC, we offer two Ash Wednesday services in the Chapel (in-person only). The ashes used for the services come from the burned palms of last year’s Palm Sunday Service. We invite you to this intimate and reflective service that marks the beginning of the Lenten season.
Ash Wednesday: February 22 • 12 p.m. & 7 p.m., in the Chapel
Ash Wednesday Luncheon
Before the 12 p.m. Ash Wednesday Service, come by at 11 a.m. for a light lunch in the Fireside Room. RSVP to Tricia (email@example.com)
Gospel of Matthew, Lenten Zoom Bible Study with Rev. Larry Young
Rev. Larry Young will be leading a 6-week study of the Gospel of Matthew, beginning Wednesday, March 1. Duplicate sessions will be offered Wednesdays at 2 and 7 p.m. The study was created for local church use by the Center for Continuing Education at Yale Divinity School, Rev. Young’s alma mater. Each session will deal with some aspect of Jesus’ ministry (Sermon on the Mount, miracles, events leading to the cross, etc.) For each, a study guide and discussion questions will be emailed ahead to class members, and each session will include a video created by Yale personnel. There will be no cost for the class.
Class begins Wednesday, March 1, 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., via Zoom
To sign up, email Rev. Young at firstname.lastname@example.org
Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/99130945843?pwd=eFliTHFUZ3JuVG1sUm5VdkxJZGRJQT09
Meeting ID: 991 3094 5843
The First UMC Lenten Devotional will be available to pick up beginning Sunday, February 19, in the Narthex, at the Sunday Hospitality Table, or in the church office. Written by members of the congregation, this year’s edition also features writings from A Sanctified Art for the Sundays in Lent. Sign up online to receive the daily devotional by email (the email version includes the scripture for the day): http://eepurl.com/brFsJL
Stay tuned for more Lenten offerings to follow!
From the UMC: What is Lent and why does it last forty days?
Lent is a season of forty days, not counting Sundays, which begins on Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Saturday. Lent comes from the Anglo Saxon word lencten, meaning “lengthen” and refers to the lengthening days of spring. The forty days represents the time Jesus spent in the wilderness, enduring the temptation of Satan and preparing to begin his ministry.
Lent is a time of repentance, fasting and preparation for the coming of Easter. It is a time of self-examination and reflection. In the early church, Lent began as a period of fasting and preparation for baptism by new converts and then became a time of penance by all Christians. Today, Christians focus on relationship with God, growing as disciples and extending ourselves, often choosing to give up something or to volunteer and give of ourselves for others.
Sundays in Lent are not counted in the forty days because each Sunday represents a “mini-Easter.” This is why you will see the designation “Sunday in Lent” rather than “Sunday of Lent” in the naming of these Sundays. On each Lord’s Day in Lent, while Lenten fasts continue, the reverent spirit of Lent is tempered with joyful anticipation of the Resurrection.