In Lent, we're reminded that again and again, suffering and brokenness find us. We doubt again, we lament again, we mess up again. Again and again, the story of Jesus on the cross repeats - every time lives are taken unjustly, every time the powerful choose corruption and violence, every time individuals forget how to love. With exacerbation we exclaim, "Again?! How long, O God?!" And yet, in the midst of the motion blur of chaos of our lives, God offers us a new way forward. Again and again. May we continue to love God with the same persistence God chooses and claims us.
Ash Wednesday (February 17) marks the beginning of the season of Lent. Lent is the forty day period (not counting Sundays) between Ash Wednesday and Holy Saturday (the day before Easter), Lent is a time of repentance, self-examination, reflection, fasting and preparation for the coming of Easter. Lent is a season of renewal. It’s a time of rebirth in nature and spiritual rebirth within ourselves as we renew our commitment to God and strengthen our faith. Check out the Chuck Knows Church video to the left for more information on what Lent is.
This Week In Worship
First Sunday in Lent
Again & Again, God Meets Us
Mark 1:9-15 | Genesis 9:8-17
God meets Jesus at the water before he is tempted in the wilderness – this is important. First and foremost, God claims us. God meets us in the liminal space, at the water’s edge, at the threshold of something new, and names us Beloved. God’s covenant with all of creation reminds us that God meets us where we are – in the midst of our reluctance, doubt, eagerness, or weariness – and proclaims we are good.
There will be Lent Kits available for all in the gathering area of the church. These kits will include: Black chalk, Ampersand, Ribbon for Lent Community Prayer Wall, Burlap and Nail, Palm Cross, Candle, Again & Again Lenten Daily Devotional Cards, Lent Poetry, Ash Wednesday reflections, Lent 101, Coloring pages, Lenten calendars, Holy Week and Easter reflection and activities for all ages, and more.
Adult Group Opportunities
Again & Again Visio Divina Art Study
Select Dates at 7:00 p.m.
Join us for one or all of these sessions where participants will reflect upon contemporary art in light of Scripture. The dates for this study are: Feb. 17, March 3, and March 17. For more information on this study contact Kathy Schmucker, our Director of Spiritual Formation.
For other Lent study opportunities check out our Programs and Groups Page!
Youth Group Opportunities
In this season the Youth of Faith United will be utilizing the Lent Devotional, the devotionals will not be in the kits, but will be available electronically. If you would like to participate message Amy Ferguson, our Youth Director, for the zoom link!
Lent resources for children and families will be available in each week’s Sunday School at Home Activities. Kid’s Lent Zoom with Bible story and activity will be held on Wednesday, March 3, 6:30-7:00pm. Contact Kathy Schmucker, Spiritual Formation Director, for more details.
Holy Week Service Opportunities
March 28 (Pre-recorded On-Demand Service – Available at 8:00 a.m.)
As part of our Palm Sunday service, we will bless the Hartville Mission Welcome Bags. While we will collect donations until April 15, we prefer to have the bags collected by March 25th so that we can bless them during our service. If you would like to provide a financial donation, we need those donations by March 30. For a full list of items to be included in the welcome bags, click here. To learn more about Hartville Migrant Mission join us for the March 21 virtual lobby and meet Hartville Migrant Mission’s Volunteer Coordinator.
Stations of the Cross
March 28th – April 4 (Outdoor, In-person, Self-Guided Prayer Walk)
The Stations of the Cross will be outdoors this year on the east side of the church property. The stations will be self-guided, will include Art, stories, Scripture, and prayer. We encourage you to stop by the church and participate in this opportunity for prayer and reflection.
April 1 (7:00 P.M. In-person & Live Streamed 45 Minute Service)
Join us for a socially distanced, COVID conscious, celebration of communion. This service will be limited to an in person attendance of 20 households and pre-registration is a requirement. Registration will open on March 25th. If the service is full, you are encouraged to participate through the livestream of our service available on YouTube and Facebook! Masks are required for this service.
April 2 (Pre-recorded On-demand Service – Available at 8:00 a.m.)
This pre-recorded service will be the “Stations of the Cross in the Community.” Join us as Pastors Steve and Jake and the staff visit various community locations in this unique offering of the traditional Stations of the Cross.
Easter Sensory Service
Wednesday, March 31 at 6:00 p.m. – Zoom and Facebook Live
Join us for this sensory rich worship experience and celebration of the resurrection! You can join by zoom using the link from the Worship by Wire email sent March 28th. The service will also be livestreamed to Facebook and YouTube.
April 4 (In-Person, Zoom, & Pre-recorded options) Sunrise Service – 7:00 a.m. – In-person
Join us, with your own lawn chair, for a 30-minute outdoor Sunrise service. Social distancing by household and mask wearing is required.
Easter Worship by Wire
Available on-demand starting at 7:00 a.m.
Join us for this celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ! This service will combine the best of our traditional and modern elements as well as offer a celebration of communion.
Outdoor Prayer Wall
Our lenten prayer wall is set up on the church lawn. You will find complete instructions and all that you need in order to help us weave our prayers together this lenten series. For more information contact Pastor Jake or our Director of Spiritual Formation Kathy Schmucker!