Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! Tomorrow, Wednesday, March 2, we will begin our Lenten journey to Easter. I hope that you will join us at 7:00pm for our annual Ash Wednesday Service. The Lenten journey from the ashes of death to resurrected life begins on the first day of Lent, Ash Wednesday, which signifies a time to turn around, to change directions, to repent. This first day of Lent reminds us that unless we are willing to die to our old selves, we cannot be raised to new life with Christ. The first step of this journey calls us to acknowledge and confront our mortality, individually and corporately. In many traditions, this is symbolized through the imposition of ashes — placing a cross on one’s forehead. During the imposition of ashes, the words: “You are dust, and to dust you shall return” (Genesis 3:19) are repeated again and again. We are to remember that we are but temporary creatures, always on the edge of death. On Ash Wednesday, we begin our Lenten trek through the desert toward Easter. Please join us for worship tomorrow evening at 7:00pm.
On another note, Monday, March 7, the locks to the building will be changed. It has been over 5 years and church leadership believe it is important to have control over our physical plant, as we begin to reopen for activities. The trustees have approved keys for Staff, President of Trustees, Moderator of Deacons and church officers only. If you need to come into the building: the office hours are Monday through Thursday – 8am to 12noon. Please understand this is a safety measure for the church family. Thanks for your understanding.
Finally, let me invite you to our Lenten Bible Study: “LENT IN PLAIN SIGHT:A Devotion through Ten Objects.” We will meet Wednesdays from 6:00pm to 7:30pm. This gathering will include dinner, fellowship and study. God is often at work through the ordinary: ordinary people, ordinary objects, ordinary grace. Through the ordinary, God communicates epiphanies, salvation, revelation, and reconciliation. It is through the mundane that we hear God’s quiet voice. In this devotion for the season of Lent, Jill J. Duffield draws readers’ attention to ten ordinary objects that Jesus would have encountered on his way to Jerusalem: dust, bread, the cross, coins, shoes, oil, coats, towels, thorns, and stones. In each object, readers will find meaning in the biblical account of Jesus’ final days. Each week, readers encounter a new object to consider through Scripture, prayer, and reflection. From Ash Wednesday to Easter, Lent in Plain Sight reminds Christians to open ourselves to the kingdom of God.
Rev. Dr. Philip W. Oehler, Sr.