What are you seeking?
Lent at Saint Paul United Methodist Church
This year our worship during Lent follows Jesus on his challenging path that announces suffering as part of life and confronts egos that get in the way.
We invite you to worship with the Saint Paul UMC community either on-line or in-person each Sunday morning.
Our worship continues to be predominately virtual, but the sanctuary is open on Sundays for those who need sacred space. Face coverings and social distancing is required, and we cannot linger with one another or fellowship as we would like. It isn’t a full return to the way things used to be, but gradually a few are finding meaning just being in the sanctuary.
Wednesday Meditation, Prayer and Song
Wednesdays at 6 pm
The sanctuary will be open at 6 p.m. for Silence and Centering Prayer. There will also be a printed devotional of prayers and scriptures for your personal meditation time. At 6:15, meditative music will begin as people continue their personal prayers. At 6:30, we will share in poetry, prayer and song. The 6:30 portion of the evening will be streamed on our website and Facebook. Wednesday evening worship begins on February 17th, Ash Wednesday.
Climate Action Team Lent Carbon Calendar
Access the calendar in three ways:
FAQ's about Lent
Lent is a season of preparation leading up to Easter. It is the forty days before Easter, not including the six Sundays. For centuries, it has been observed as a special time of self examination and penitence. Lent is a time for concentration on fundamental values and priorities, and is not a time for self punishment.
The custom is to mark the season of Lent by giving up some things and taking on others. Both can serve to mark the season as a holy time of preparation. Some examples of things people give up for Lent include sweets, meat for all or some meals, caffeine, and alcohol. In most cases, giving up something for Lent can be made more meaningful by using the money or time for another purpose. For example, meal times on fast days could be spent in prayer. Another example is that if you give up meat during Lent, the extra money that would go to meat dishes can be given to a group, such as World Vision, which works to end hunger worldwide. Some things added during Lent are daily Bible reading, fasting, times of prayer, taking a course of study related in some way to spirituality. Note: Sundays are celebrations of Christ in our midst and are always an appropriate day to lessen the restrictions of Lent.
This is actually the day before Lent begins. The day is named for the “shriving” or confessing that was traditional on this day before beginning Lent. This day is also known as Mardi Gras, or Fat Tuesday,. because it was a time for eating the things from which one would abstain during Lent. Pancake suppers are traditional as they were a way of using up some of the ingredients not needed during Lent.
The first day of Lent is marked with a special liturgy. The theme for the day, though not for all of Lent, is our mortality. This is symbolized by the imposition of ashes on the forehead, with the words, “You are dust and to dust you shall return”. In the Old Testament, ashes were a sign of penitence (feeling regretful at offenses) and mourning.
This Sunday before Easter is the last Sunday in Lent. The day commemorates Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem. The day is also marked by sometimes reading the story of Jesus’ passion (the word used to describe Jesus’ death comes from ”suffering” which is one old meaning of passion). Some of the Palm Sunday palms are kept and used to make the Ash Wednesday ashes for the next year.
This is the Thursday in Holy Week (the week leading up to Easter). The day is a time for remembering The Last Supper. The name comes from the Latin word “Maundatum” for “commandment” as Jesus said, “I give you a new commandment; that you love one another”. At the conclusion of this service, altars are stripped of any ornamentation and crosses are removed or veiled to mark the solemness of the occasion.
The Friday in Holy Week is a time for remembering Jesus’ death. This is the second day of special observance for which fasting is recommended. One should use discretion in decided how best to observe this day. There is no celebration of Communion from Maundy Thursday until the Easter Vigil on early Sunday.