Lent is a season of intense focus. For six weeks, we strive for honesty with ourselves and with God: what needs healing? what needs forgiving? what limits our commitment to justice, kindness & self-offering?
We each find our our own way with God, but there is wisdom in tradition. For generations, Christians have known that we grow more when we try to grow. We pray more when we commit ourselves to prayer. We grow more in holiness when we commit to being together. So, the tradition of Lent is one of renewed discipline: we commit ourselves to daily prayer, weekly eucharist, and some form of study.
It beings with Ash Wednesday. We show our commitment to God by breaking our normal patterns, and coming to church at an unfamiliar time.
Ash Wednesday is a fast day, and a day for confession. We take a day to focus on all the wrongs that need righting. We remember that we are dust, and to dust we shall return. We remember that vividly, tangibly by being marked with Ash and feeling the grit of it against our skin. And then – we hear the promise of forgiveness, and share in the bread of life.
There are three services in The Waltham Group on Ash Wednesday:
- 11 am Eucharist with Ashes — St Matthews, New Waltham
- 4 pm Children’s Service with Ashes — All Saints, Waltham
- 7.30 pm Sung Eucharist with Ashes — All Saints, Waltham
By taking part, you give yourself the best chance at a good Lent: full of healing, growth and holiness. But more importantly — by taking part, you give others their best chance of a good Lent. We need each other to get through this: to offer challenge and encouragement and hope.