The Lenten Season: February 18 - April 2, 2015
Christians across the globe, will enter the season of preparation before Easter known as Lent. Starting on Ash Wednesday -- which is February 18th this year -- Lenten worship is a season for personal and corporate spiritual renewal. It is a time for intense study of God's Word, for meditation, for prayer, and for self-examination. The theme of Lent is spiritual preparation for Easter symbolized by the three spiritual disciplines of prayer, fasting, and giving to the poor.

It is easy to get lost in the cultural caricature of Easter and miss the meaning. Lent is a reminder that the resurrection only occurred after the crucifixion. Rather than skipping over the ministry and crucifixion of Christ, Lent prepares us for the joy of Resurrection Sunday as we symbolically enter the sorrow and pain that preceded it.

On the Christian Calendar, Lent is the 40 days beginning on Ash Wednesday. Biblically, 40 is an important number: in the story of Noah, it rained for 40 days and 40 nights; God's chosen people wandered in the wilderness for 40 years; and Jesus fasted in the desert for 40 days before He began His public ministry. Forty Days has been used by God to represent a period of trial, testing, and preparation.

The cross, the instrument of the suffering, crucifixion and death of Our Lord, symbolizes Jesus' victory over death and the hope of our salvation. The Journey of Lent is to immerse ourselves in this grand story so that it might increase our appreciation of Easter and love for Jesus. May we rejoice in the light of God who came into the world to save us!

For those embarking on the annual Lenten journey, we've gathered quotes about fasting, spiritual growth and the power of prayer.
  1. "Lent comes providentially to reawaken us, to shake us from our lethargy." -- Pope Francis

  2. Some people think that having ash on your forehead is ridiculous. But I am neither ashamed nor afraid because the ashes remind me that I have to someday pass away and reunite with my creator. -- Walter Buns

  3. "The most important thing a born again Christian can do is to pray." -- Chuck Smith

  4. "Prayer is where the action is." -- John Wesley

  5. "The proof of love is in the works. Where love exists, it works great things. But when it ceases to act, it ceases to exist." -- Pope St. Gregory the Great

  6. "Prayer is reaching out after the unseen; fasting is letting go of all that is seen and temporal. Fasting helps express, deepen, confirm the resolution that we are ready to sacrifice anything, even ourselves to attain what we seek for the kingdom of God." -- Andrew Murray

  7. It is not repentance that saves me; repentance is the sign that I realize what God has done in Christ Jesus. -- Oswald Chambers

  8. Whoever wishes to be my follower must deny his very self, take up his cross each day, and follow in my steps. Luke 9:23

  9. Go and learn what the Scriptures mean when they say, `Instead of offering sacrifices to me, I want you to be merciful to others.' I didn't come to invite good people to be my followers. I came to invite sinners. Matthew 9:13

  10. Humanity is never so beautiful as when praying for forgiveness, or else forgiving another. Jean P.F Richter

  11. "Satan does not care how many people read about prayer if only he can keep them from praying. -- Paul E. Billheimer

  12. During these 40 days, let me put away all my pride. Let me change my heart and give up all that is not good within me. Let me love God with all that I am and all that I have." -- Genesis Grain

  13. "Remember that lent and Ash Wednesday is not just about putting away the bad things. It is about creating good things and helping the poor and the needy, being kind to people and much more." -- Jacob Winters

  14. "The greatest thing anyone can do for God or man is pray." -- S.D. Gordon

  15. "Fasting confirms our utter dependence upon God by finding in Him a source of sustenance beyond food." -- Dallas Willard

  16. "It is not just about giving up our favorite food but it’s about going further and giving up things like hatred and un-forgiveness. You need to clean your heart and prepare yourself for purity." -- Amanda Jobs

  17. "Even Jesus who is the Lord of Lords and the king of kings fasted and prayed in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights. How much more we need to do the same with all our sinfulness and baggage's." -- Tamara Lane

  18. "God does nothing except in response to believing prayer." -- John Wesley

  19. "Prayer strikes the winning blow; service is simply picking up the pieces." -- S.D. Gordon

  20. "The Lord measures out perfection neither by the multitude nor the magnitude of our deeds, but by the manner in which we perform them." -- St. John of the Cross

  21. "Lenten practices of giving up pleasures are good reminders that the purpose of life is not pleasure. The purpose of life is to attain to perfect life, all truth and undying ecstatic love – which is the definition of God. In pursuing that goal we find happiness. Pleasure is not the purpose of anything; pleasure is a by-product resulting from doing something that is good. One of the best ways to get happiness and pleasure out of life is asking ourselves, 'How can I please God?' and, 'Why am I not better?' It is the pleasure-seeker who is bored, for all pleasures diminish with repetition." -- Fulton J. Sheen
 

  • February 12-16, 2018
    Board of Bishops' and International Ministers & Lay Association Meeting
    Norfolk Waterside Marriott Hotel
    235 East Main Street
    Norfolk, VA
    Register by February 5, 2018!
  • February 14, 2018
    Ash Wednesday
    Ash Wednesday is always celebrated on a Wednesday seven weeks prior to Easter Sunday. For Christians, the day marks the first day of Lent and the starting of 6 weeks of fasting and penance.
  • February 14-March 29, 2018
    Lent
    Lent begins on Ash Wednesday each year and for Christians starts the 40 day period of fasting. The day represents the 40 days Jesus spend fasting in the wilderness.
  • February 14, 2018
    Valentine's Day
    We love because he first loved us 1 John 4:19
  • March 11, 2018
    Daylight Savings Time
    Spring forward - Turn your clocks forward an hour at 2 a.m. local standard time (At 2 a.m. on March 11th, the clocks after they are moved forward an hour, will read 3 a.m. local daylight time).

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