This post was written by our Guest Blogger, the Rev’d Colin Perkins.
Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, which this year is on St Valentineâ€™s Day, 14th February. It lasts until Easter Eve, which is 31st March. During this penitential season we carry out in our spiritual lives something like the spring cleaning we do in our homes.
In church things are a little more sombre: no flowers or special decorations except those used for Mothering Sunday, and quieter, more reflective hymns. We leave out the Gloria in Holy Communion services.
In private we can think about our own progress in our Christian walk, and examine our consciences. It may be helpful to read a Christian book â€“ there are plenty in our church library to choose from.
Here are some suggestions for things we could do as individuals:
- Read 1 Corinthians 13, verses 4-7. Here St Paul writes about all the things that â€˜Loveâ€™ is. Go over it, putting your own name in place of the word Love, and think about how true it is of you.
- If you donâ€™t usually read the Bible every day, try it. If you donâ€™t know what to read, the weekly pew sheet gives at least five readings for each Sunday and it would do no harm to read them again, one each day, during the week.
- If you are free, come to either or both of the midweek services. The regular Wednesday morning service at 10.15, and the early Thursday morning Prayer Book Communion service at 7.30am.
- It is a good tradition to practise some form of self-denial in Lent, but not just to lose weight! If you give up something give away the money saved or use the time saved in some worthwhile manner.
- Write an article for our magazine, Gateway: something that could be used at any time would be helpful. Everyone has memories, reminiscences or even rants, and something from more than the usual list of contributors would be gratefully received by the readers and editor.