How will you mark the season?

In the season of Lent, running roughly 40 days between Ash Wednesday and Easter, we are invited to a “holy observance…by self-examination and repentance; by prayer, fasting, and self-denial; and by reading and meditating on God’s holy Word.” (Book of Common Prayer, 265)

On March 1 we begin the season anew. Here you can find resources to help you, your family, and your congregation step back from daily routine and more fully participate in this time of preparation and reflection.

Do you have resources you would like to share with the wider diocese? Please let us know.

Retreat, Prayer, & Scripture Study

Living Lent can be difficult unless you break the habits and routines of everyday life. Withdraw from week-in, week-out busyness to spend time with God in prayer, Scripture study, and small-group conversation.

If you don’t currently have a structured prayer life, consider committing yourself to praying the Daily Office during Lent. The four-fold form of Anglican prayer–including Morning Prayer (which takes about ~20 min), Noonday Prayer (~5 min), Evening Prayer (~20 min), and Compline (~7 min)–draws on Scripture to invite us into a rhythm of daily quietude. For the office in its full form (including daily scripture readings, appointed collects, and some additional add-ons), see the Office of Faith Formation’s Daily Prayer page.

Faith Formation Blog

For this year’s Lenten Blog, posts will be written by Office of the Bishop staff. Look for new posts on Ash Wednesday, then Tuesdays and Thursdays during the six weeks of Lent.

Lectio for Lent–An Audio-Guided Lectio Divina (NEW)

At the start of Advent, St. Gregory’s, Littleton, began living a “Year of Wholeness.” Since then the congregation has been discovering ways to engage in wholeness in Christ–spiritually, mentally, and physically. The spiritual component includes some modern, some traditional disciplines. One Sunday during Epiphany, Fr. Todd led a Lectio Divina in lieu of a sermon, and from this grew the inspiration for Lectio for Lent. St. Gregory’s invites you to use Lectio for Lent as part of your Lenten discipline. Listen to it in the car, while doing dishes, or during a quiet moment in your day. You may sign up for a daily email reminder or simply access the series from the church website. Learn more >>

Online Book Club–Lenten Selection (NEW)

On Wednesday, March 22, the Online Book Club will begin its Lenten selection Walk with Jesus: Stations of the Cross by Henry Nouwen. Walk with Jesus is a book of meditations inspired by a series of drawings by Sr. Helen David. The drawings represent traditional Stations of the Cross through the passion and suffering of the world’s poor. It is through these images that Nouwen uncovers the ongoing passion of Christ. The book club typically meets every other week via the easy-to-use online video conferencing software Zoom. Participants also are able to join by phone. Sign up Now to receive log-in details for our next meeting.

Lenten Series

Are you looking for an adult formation or soup supper series to use during the season of Lent? Check out 5 Marks of Love: A Six Week Series for Lent, a new Lenten study from The Center for the Ministry of Teaching (CMT) and the Society of St. John the Evangelist (SSJE). This six-week series provides the opportunity to observe and to reflect on the ways in which the Divine Life expresses itself in and through us: individually and in our faith communities, as well as in the world around us. Each week explores the Anglican Marks of Mission (Tell, Teach, Tend, Transform, and Treasure) through videos, questions, and exercises so we can speak more clearly and act truthfully, motivated always by hearts marked by God’s love.

Meditations for the Season

Ashes and the Phoenix: Meditations for the Season of Lent can be read alone or added to your daily prayer routine. Writers include Cynthia Cannon, Mary Cox, Jason Leo, Teresa Pasquale Mateus, C.K. Robertson, Porter Taylor, and Glenice Robinson-Como.  “Threaded throughout with the stunningly visual and visceral poems of Len Freeman and guided by the collects for Lent and Holy Week, Ashes and the Phoenix seeks to lead us through the emotions, symbols, sights, sounds, and scents of Lent. Check out a Sample Reading. Copies can be ordered from Forward Movement.

Children’s Ministry: Burying the Alleluia

During the season of Lent, Episcopalians give up speaking or singing the word “alleluia.” Going without this joyful word helps us celebrate it all the more come Easter. To help children say goodbye to the alleluia, you can create a tangible alleluia, place it inside a bag or some sort of container with a lid and either set it aside or bury it outside. Say a prayer of farewell and wait for Easter to resurrect it. More information and prayer idea >>

Youth: Daily Devotion

How can we support our young people in finding a meaningful Lenten discipline? Is it even fair to expect one more thing of them in their busy daily lives? How about a daily devotion? Something to help them pause and recenter themselves each day with meditation and prayer. Have a look at d365, a website produced by Passport, Inc. with daily devotions–“reflections on themes that impact our faith journey”–written especially for students. Each devotion invites the reader to pause, listen, think, pray, and go. An optional musical selection can be played during the devotion. Devotions take approximately 5-10 minutes a day. The Episcopal Church is one of three denominational sponsors of d365.

Youth: Book Resource

Church Publishing has adapted its book Christ Walk for a tween teen audience. Christ Walk Kids is a 40-day journey for youth “to explore mind, body, and spiritual health while setting physical goals by committing to walk different routes based on routes in the Bible.” Each chapter explores a topic all kids think about, but don’t always know how to discuss. Topics are accompanied by physical challenges (walking, running, or biking “biblical” routes); mental challenges (deep discussion and thoughtfulness of youth health risks); and spiritual challenges (biblical references and spiritually grounded self-development). Read more about the book >>

Family: Observing Lent in the Home

Parents are the ultimate guides in the Christian formation of their children. Praying and learning together in the home makes faith foundational in a child’s life. Lent in a Bag is a multisensorial way to help the whole family practice Lent. Symbols relating to the life of Christ are placed in a bag. Then, each week (or more frequently) a family member chooses one of the symbols, reads a related reflection, and invites discussion about its meaning in Christ’s life and in our own.