Traditionally, the beginning of Lenten season of confession, repentance, and renewal that culminates in our celebration of Easter has been marked by Ash Wednesday. In many Christian churches around the world (and around Richmond) believers gather on the first day of Lent to meditate on and lament the unfinished business of sanctification in our hearts and in the cosmos, and leave bearing an outward sign of this inward reality in the form of a smudge of ashes on their foreheads.
In partnership with Community West Church, this year we’ll mark the beginning of Lent together as a distinctive part of our usual Wednesday evening time together on February 18th.
While our planned Lenten Dinner before the Service has been Cancelled on account of the snow, please gather in the Fellowship Hall Commons from 6:30-6:50 for a light dessert and hot beverages.
If you registered for dinner, you'll be contacted about refunds or transfer of that registration to a future Connect3 family meal.
Why Ash Wednesday?
Ashes are the biblical symbol of lamentation and repentance, placed on the heads of those who mourn and are in exile. Therefore, we join the prophets and even Israel’s kings in taking upon our bodies a physical stain that reflects the stain of sin and pain in hearts and land.
But ashes are also evidence of fire— an even more pervasive symbol of the refining work and power of God’s spirit. We put on ashes as a sign and reminder that God can and will burn away the dross of our lives. As with the cross, in ashes we have an image of pain and shame that is transformed by the presence and sacrifice of Jesus into a promise of salvation. Plan to gather and begin our journey to the cross and resurrection together this Ash Wednesday, in a service will engage all our senses and is appropriate for children as well as adults.
The Ash Wednesday Service will begin at 7:00 PM in the Sanctuary and last about an hour. It will include songs, scripture reading and a chance to name and repent or our sins, as well as communion and the imposition of ashes.
Are the snowy roads keeping you away? Join us "live!" Click here and watch via simulcast.
Childcare will be provided for kids 4 years old and younger.
Of course, no registration is needed for the service itself, and it would be a great opportunity to invite friends for worship and fellowship (or a late dinner) after the service.