Lent can be a somber season of the church year.
It begins with an ashen sign of mortality and sin. Bright colors turn to deep purples, alleluias fall silent, and worshipers ponder what to give up this year. Though the word Lent derives from an Old English word for springtime, spring still seems far off in much of the Northern Hemisphere.
Easter, on the other hand, is obviously joyful. Bells ring, alleluias echo, white and gold shine brightly, and every single candle is lit. Jesus is risen, and so are the daffodils, hyacinths, and lilies. Joy clearly belongs to Easter.
Why reflect on joy during the quiet introspection of Lent instead of waiting for Easter?
Because when we move beyond surface assumptions, something beautiful emerges, richer and more nuanced than sheer happiness.
A joyful Lent is not a contradiction in terms.
As it turns out, joy is right at home during a minor-key season like Lent – and if joy is there, perhaps there are other seasons of life that joy calls home, too. Joy is a beacon that points us toward God’s unfailing presence, even in the heart of fear and pain.
Join us on Ash Wednesday to begin our Lenten season and on Wednesdays during Lent as we worship with Holden Evening Prayer and reflect on the joy that points us to God’s steadfast love, relentless forgiveness, and unfailing presence.
Ash Wednesday worship with Holy Communion and imposition of ashes
February 14 at Noon (with livestream) and 6:30 PM in the Sanctuary
Midweek worship every Wednesday during Lent with Holden Evening Prayer
February 21 and 28 and March 6, 13 and 20 at Noon (Chapel) and 6:30 PM (Sanctuary)
Lenten soup meals at 12:30 PM and 5:30 PM in the Activity Center (beginning February 21) with freewill donations to go toward the BackPack Program at Morley and Pyrtle elementary schools.