This is an excerpt from Rev. Deborah’s 2015 Lenten letter to the parish. For the complete text please check out our website, you will find it under “Reflections”:
As we move into this next Church season, the season of Lent, I thought it appropriate to once again revisit what Lent means and how we mark it as Anglicans. Lent is the season of preparation leading up to Easter. It is the forty days plus the six Sundays before Easter. For centuries it has been observed as a special time of self-examination and penitence. Lent is a time for reflection of our lives and our relationship with Christ… it is not a time for self punishment, as was often observed in the Middle Ages.
Throughout Lent, our worship services take on a simpler tone, appropriate to this season. There are usually limited flowers very simple decorations in our worship space, and the colour of the vestments worn by the priest are purple – a sign of solemnity. The word “Alleluia” is not used in hymns or services. You may remember from past years that we sometimes have hid the Alleluia banner in the altar during Lent. The last two weeks of Lent are known as Passion-tide, and during this period crosses showing the risen Christ are veiled. The last week of Lent is known as Holy Week, when we solemnly recall in “real time” the final events of Our Lord’s earthly life. These practices help the worshiping community to mark this as a special season of renewal in the Church’s year.