A Note from Pastor

  The season of Lent begins with Ash Wednesday on February 22.  However, already at the beginning of the month we enter the season of what is called pre-Lent.  While still officially part of the Epiphany season, what are often referred to as the “gesima” Sundays begin to prepare us for the “official” forty day season of Lent leading up to Holy Week and climaxing on Easter Sunday.
     The pre-Lenten Sunday’s of “Gesimatide” are Septugesima, Heptagesima and Quinquagesima.  These titles simply refer to the number of days before Easter; seventy, sixty and fifty.  The extended countdown to Lent and Easter Sunday gives us the opportunity to review the Three Solas of Grace, Faith and Scripture alone more fully as we prepare for the official beginning of Lent.  
    When Ash Wednesday and Lent finally arrive, with its forty-day emphasis on deeper reflection, repentance and contrition; the encouragement and emphasis on God’s mercy and grace proclaimed during pre-Lent will aid us in praying with King David as he laments in Psalm 51, “Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight.”  
    Therefore, look ahead with joyful expectation to how we will pray beginning with the Collect for Ash Wednesday: “Almighty and everlasting God, You despise nothing You have made and forgive the sins of the penitent.  Create in us new and contrite hearts that lamenting our sins and acknowledging our wretchedness we may receive from You full pardon and forgiveness; through Jesus Christ, Your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.”  Amen.

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