St Timothy’s will be observing Lent this year.
Here is a message from Malcolm:
LENT is one of the seasons of the Christian year. Nobody is sure where the name comes from. Some people think it’s the time when the days lengthen; others suggest this is the lean–time when the food from the harvest starts to run out, before the first crops of the new year.
Easter, as the main celebration of the year, was when many people chose to be baptised. It was also a time when people who had left the Church, or even been excluded, might be readmitted. So the weeks before Easter became linked with ideas about repentance, prayer and preparation.
Gradually the custom emerged of 40 days of preparation for Easter. The 40 days don’t include Sundays – so this year Lent begins on Wednesday March 6th and ends on Saturday April 20th.
I know that for many people, Lent was traditionally a time to “give something up.” That has its place, but Lent can also be about starting something new. So here are three Lent Suggestions for you.
This year, the Church of England invites us all to sign up to be a “Lent Pilgrim.” You can sign up to receive a daily email through the season of Lent. Each one will contain a short Bible reading, an invitation to reflect, a suggestion for prayer and a prompt to act.
Go online to www.churchofengland.org/pilgrim for information or to sign up.
Lent Study Course
Opening up the Bible – Wednesday 8-9pm in church. March 13th, 20th & 27th. April 3rd & 10th
Fasting means going without food for a period of time. Jesus gives advice on fasting, and says he expects his disciples will fast when he is no longer with them (Matthew 6.16-18 and 9.14-17). And in Acts 13.1-3 the leaders of the Church fast and pray when they are seeking God’s guidance.
You are invited to join me in fasting and prayer for our church and diocese, by going without food (just clear liquids) from midnight to midday every Friday in Lent. Those who can are also invited to join me for prayer in Church at 12noon, and then for a simple soup lunch for anyone who wants to join us. There will also be a collection on behalf of Christian Aid. A sign up sheet will be available in Church.