Lent begins Wednesday, February 18, with our Ash Wednesday Service at 7pm. Dr. Tony Barrand will open the service with the traditional "Come Oh Thou Traveler" by Charles Wesley. The choir, under the direction of Peter Amidon, will offer two anthems: "Deep River", an African American Spiritual, and "Deep Peace" a contemporary composition by John Rutter, inviting the congregation to enter the deep peace and solitude of the Lenten season. Rev. Lise Sparrow will host the Imposition of Ashes and the Sacrament of Holy Communion and offer a brief homily focused on the parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector and the practice of humility.
Subsequent Sunday services throughout Lent will lift up different parables central to discipleship and the teachings of Jesus:
Week One, the First Sunday in Lent, February 22, is based on the parable of the sower and the seed. In this parable, the seed that falls on fertile soil takes root and grows, while seeds in other soils fail. The service includes readings from Scripture, a children’s sermon, a sermon and thematic hymns and anthems that help us to remember that when we are open to receiving the Word, the Word of Christ and a deep sense of Peace flourishes within us.
Week Two, March 1 the service is based on the parable of the hidden treasure and the priceless pearl. In this parable, two men give all that they have to buy objects of great worth helping us to remember that we who are priceless to Christ receive priceless gifts through faith.
Week Three, March 8, is based on the parable of the Good Samaritan. In this parable, a man beaten on the road gets help from an unlikely traveler helps us to remember that we who are often beaten down along the road of life encounter the healing of Christ in miraculous ways.
Week Four, March 15 is based on the parable of the workers in the vineyard. In this parable, all workers in a vineyard are given the same pay from the master, no matter how long they have labored help us to remember that all who have been called to Faith are blessed by the same reward in Christ.
Week Five, March 22 is based on the parable of the Prodigal Son In this parable, a wayward son returns to the forgiving embrace of his father, who welcomes him home help us to remember that we who err can return again and again to the embrace of our Faith and the unconditional Love of God.
Palm Sunday, March 29 is based on the parable of the shepherd who leaves his 99 sheep to find the one who is lost. We who are lost in sin are found by our loving Shepherd, who heads into Jerusalem amid praise and palm branches.
The Maundy Thursday Service, held on April 2 at 7pm, includes the story of the Last Supper and the last actions of the disciples, helping us to remember the amazing forgiveness of God and of Jesus at his Crucifixion.
Good Friday, April 3, we join the ecumenical community from 12noon to 3pm at First United Methodist Church on Town Crier Drive for a service of homilies and anthems focused on the Last Words of Jesus.
EASTER SUNDAY, April 5, is celebrated first at 6:30 am with our Easter Sunrise Service, followed at 7am with our Annual Pancake Breakfast.
The Family Service is celebrated at 10am with Joy and Jubilation.
Everyone is Welcome!