Lent

Lenten Devotionals

Devotionals will be available on Ash Wednesday, February 26.

Lent for Families

Discover how you can share Lent with your children.

Ash Wednesday Services

February 26 • 12:30 p.m. & 7:30 p.m., Chapel

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 represents 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. 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.


Lenten Yoga Series

March 4 – April 1 • Wednesdays • 7 p.m., Simkins Hall

In this coming season of spiritual dedication, the young adult group Open Space invites all to add the spiritual discipline of yoga to your Lenten practice. Led by Kristia Oney, the Lenten Yoga series will incorporate gentle, restorative, and energizing physical movement (with modifications for all mobility and flexibility levels) along with guidance through scripture, connecting body, mind, and spirit to help us settle into this season with intention. All ages and all levels welcome. Donations accepted.

March 4 and April 1 Lenten Yoga will be held in the Fireside Room.

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Service of Lessons & Anthems

March 29 • 10 a.m. Sanctuary Worship Service

A beautiful and moving annual service of Lessons and Anthems. This is a solemn service, designed to prepare our hearts and minds for Holy Week. In word and music, we will remember the last days of Jesus’ life–his witness, his teaching, his faithfulness.

Order for Easter Flowers

April 2 • Deadline for Dedications

Easter Flowers will once again adorn the sanctuary for Easter service. If you would like to donate toward the purchase of flowers in celebration of a loved one, an event, a joy, or a remembrance please contact the church office info@santamonicaumc.org or 310-393-8258. Cost per flower is $12.


Holy Week

Palm Sunday

April 5   10 a.m. Sanctuary Worship

First United Methodist Church and Preschool welcome you and your family to this annual spring celebration!  Come take part in the annual commemoration of Jesus’s entry into Jerusalem. This day celebrates the start of Holy Week and will feature a children’s palm procession. Following the service, all are welcome to the Family Brunch at no charge. Take a photo with the Easter Bunny, enjoy some craft activities and the annual Egg Hunt!


Good Friday

April 10

  • Prayer Vigil 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., Chapel – Open all day to pray and “watch with Jesus.”
  • Good Friday Community Service 12 p.m., St. Paul’s Lutheran Church (958 Lincoln Blvd)
  • Labyrinth Open for Walks 1 – 9 p.m., Simkins Hall. Walking the Labyrinth is an ancient spiritual practice, a way to quiet our minds and open our spirits to the presence of the Holy. Every step a prayer.

Easter Vigil

April 11 • 7:30 p.m., Courtyard, Chapel

Join simple church as we observe the ancient tradition of the Easter Vigil, a service of light, word, and table where we remember God’s life-giving acts from the passage from slavery to freedom, from sin to salvation, from death into new life. The service will begin in the courtyard with a procession of light moving into our chapel.


Easter Sunday

April 12

6:30 a.m. Easter Sunrise Service – Palisades Park

(Santa Monica Blvd. & Ocean Ave.)

Coming to worship on Easter Sunday at an hour and place different than we normally do, offers a sense that something unexpected has happened. Where there appeared to be no hope, there is now hope. Where there was death, there is now resurrection!
Some will remember the words of the prophet Isaiah, “The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who lived in a land of deep darkness—on them light has shined” (Isaiah 9:2 NRSV). Sometimes the world around us can seem very dark, but in Christ we have a light of hope, the very presence of God in the midst of us.*

Beautiful scenery, worship, Holy Communion, hot coffee & fellowship. Bring blankets, chairs, & fresh flowers for the cross.

*Easter Sunrise Services: A Celebration of Resurrection originally published at UMC.org by Joe Lovino

10 a.m. Easter Celebration Sanctuary Worship

Family Sunday with music of choir, brass & organ, Easter Lilies & Alleluias! Children remain in church; activity bags are provided. Each child will receive a small gift of a flower after the service.