Liturgical Year

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Lent 2017

  Wednesday March 1 to Thursday, April 13

Early Christians observed “a season of penitence and fasting” in preparation for the  Easter Vigil, Baptisms and  the Paschal feast  The season is known as Lent, which comes from an Old English word meaning spring, the time of lengthening days.

We fast during Lent for forty days, in imitation of Christ’s fasting in the wilderness.

All Christians are invited “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” (BCP, p. 265).

Our purpose in Lent is to deepen our spiritual lives and reflect on how we fall short of the grace and love God intends for us. We can give up something to make space to reflect on God and how we fall short, grow stagnant or become cold hearted. Or we can take on a practice that will draw us closer to God. Our goal is to cultivate lasting spiritual growth.

The forty days of Lent extend from Ash Wednesday through Holy Saturday (omitting Sundays). The last three days of Lent are the sacred days of Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy Saturday.

Lenten Litany

” Create in us a clean heart, O God.

     And renew a right spirit within us.

       Create in me a clean heart. O God.

and renew a right spirit within me.

   Have mercy on me, O God, according to your loving kindness

        in your great compassion blot out my offenses

          Renew a right spirit within me.

    Wash me through and through from my wickedness

         and cleanse me from my brokenness.

            Renew a right spirit with in me.

    For I know my transgressions

         and my brokenness is ever before me.

         Renew a right spirit with in me.

    Purge me from my brokenness and I shall be pure:

         wash me and I shall be clean indeed.

         Renew a right spirit with in me.

    Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.

         Create in me a clean heart. O God

         and renew a right spirit with in me”

        ( Adapted from Anne E Kitch 2004)