Ash Wednesday

Service of Holy Eucharist with Imposition of Ashes

The Service for Ash Wednesday is open to all. Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the Season of Lent for many Christians, including Episcopalians. Join us on the Way. ALL are welcome. You are invited to join us as we being a holy Lent.

Want to know more about Ash Wednesday and Lent? Here is a video from Busted Halo (Roman Catholic media site). As Episcopalians we share these same understandings about Ash Wednesday and Lent:

Looking for still more information? Try these links to our Episcopal Glossary of Terms:

Waiting for Sunday

Asking for grace to wait and hope.

Tombstone in the dark of night

O God, Creator of heaven and earth: Grant that, as the crucified body of your dear Son was laid in the tomb and rested on this holy Sabbath, so we may await with him the coming of the third day, and rise with him to newness of life; who now lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Book of Common Prayer, 221

For those of us who have taken the witness of the Gospel to heart it is sometimes difficult to put ourselves in the place of those first believers. They did not know, could not know what was to be revealed. Perhaps they hoped. Perhaps they thought they understood what Jesus was saying. But, the brutal events of arrest, condemnation, crucifixion, death, and burial in the tomb, not to mention the fear that they could be next to experience it all, had to be hope-crushing and heart-breaking.

Still, we do have some understanding of the darkness of this in-between day. Often we wait in a “not-knowing tension”. Not knowing if the biopsy will reveal a cancer. Not knowing if we will get the job for which we have interviewed. Not knowing if this person is our life-partner. We have hopes. We struggle with understanding and meaning-making. But, we don’t really know what tomorrow will bring. These experiences connect us with our ancestors. We wait. ~Fr. Dan

Be well. Do good. Pay attention. Keep learning.

Image: Christ Church of Oak Brook, IL

Graciously behold this your family

Remembering Jesus on Good Friday.

Three spikes on Good Friday

Collect for Good Friday

Almighty God, we pray you graciously to behold this your family, for whom our Lord Jesus Christ was willing to be betrayed, and given into the hands of sinners, and to suffer death upon the cross; who now lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Book of Common Prayer, 276

Be well. Do good. Pay attention. Keep learning

Image source: JobMob.co.ii

A pledge of eternal life

Holy mysteries giving us a pledge of eternal life.

 

Bread and Wine and Cross of Nails

Collect for Maundy Thursday

Almighty Father, whose dear Son, on the night before he suffered, instituted the Sacrament of his Body and Blood: Mercifully grant that we may receive it thankfully in remembrance of Jesus Christ our Lord, who in these holy mysteries gives us a pledge of eternal life; and who now lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Book of Common Prayer, 221

On this day we remember the meal Jesus shared with the Twelve. We remember that he took, blessed, broke, and shared the bread; we remember that he took, blessed, and shared the cup. We remember that he told the Twelve: this is my body, this is the blood of the new covenant. We remember that he asked them to do the same taking, blessing and sharing in remembrance of him. And so we do. May we indeed, receive these gifts, receive this love, “thankfully in remembrance of Jesus Christ our Lord.” ~Fr. Dan

Be well. Do good. Pay attention. Keep learning.

Image: ChurchArt Online

Grace to accept suffering

Interrogation by prayer. How confident are you?

Cross of nails and the Bible

Collect for Wednesday in Holy Week

Lord God, whose blessed Son our Savior gave his body to be whipped and his face to be spit upon: Give us grace to accept joyfully the sufferings of the present time, confident of the glory that shall be revealed; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Book of Common Prayer, 220

This Collect interrogates me: just how confident am I about “the glory that shall be revealed”? Am I confident enough to “accept joyfully the sufferings of the present time”? Day by day speaks the answer. May we all accept and use the graces given in to us to bring others to know the love we have experienced. ~Fr. Dan

Be well. Do good. Pay attention. Keep learning.

Image: ChurchArt Online

Summoning grace to transform death into life

Instruments of shameful death transformed.

Cross of nails and the Bible

Collect for Tuesday in Holy Week

O God, by the passion of your blessed Son you made an instrument of shameful death to be for us the means of life: Grant us so to glory in the cross of Christ, that we may gladly suffer shame and loss for the sake of your Son our Savior Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Book of Common Prayer, 220

What a request we make of God: “to glory in the cross of Christ, that we may gladly suffer shame and loss for the sake of Jesus Christ.” And yet, if we are truly ready to follow Christ, this will be our experience at some point along the Way. May we receive the graces we ask so that we will gladly respond as the Christ-followers we are. ~Fr. Dan

Be well. Do good. Pay attention. Keep learning.

Image: ChurchArt Online

The Way to life and peace

Discover the interconnection of pain and life.

Cross of nails and the Bible

Collect for Monday in Holy Week

Almighty God, whose most dear Son went not up to joy but first he suffered pain, and entered not into glory before he was crucified: Mercifully grant that we, walking in the way of the cross, may find it none other than the way of life and peace; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Book of Common Prayer, 220

During Holy Week we will share the Collects to be used on each day—in the Daily Office and/or the Holy Eucharist. These collects encourage us to walk with Jesus in this Holy Week. These collects inspire and nurture our spirits in this Holy Week.

Beyond Holy Week, this Collect is one of the choices as a Collect for The Prayers (BCP, 97-98) in the Daily Office. ~Fr. Dan

Be well. Do good. Pay attention. Keep learning.

Image: ChurchArt Online

A “Franciscan Blessing”

 

A Palm Sunday Watercolor

May God bless you
with discomfort at easy answers,
half truths, and superficial relationships
so that you may live deep within your heart.

May God bless you
with anger at injustice, oppression,
and exploitation of people
and all creation
so that you may work for justice, freedom, healing and peace.

May God bless you
with tears to shed for those who suffer pain,
rejection, hunger, and war,
so that you may reach out your hands
to comfort them and turn their pain into joy.

May God bless you
with enough foolishness
to believe that you can make a difference in this world,
and do what others claim cannot be done. Amen.

The Sundays in Lent are not counted in the 40 days of Lent. On the Sundays in Lent we will share words of blessing. As Holy Week begins on the Sunday of the Passion: Palm Sunday, I offer this “Franciscan Blessing.”

I do not know the original source of the Franciscan Blessing. I have seen this blessing in several different (almost-the-same) forms. As one Franciscan author puts it: “I do not know the origin of this ‘Franciscan’ blessing but, … it is a good counterbalance to the cosy ‘Francis of the birdbath’ spirituality!”

Be well. Do good. Pay attention. Keep learning.

Image: Watercolor by Elanie Moore for St. Hugh’s Episcopal Church in Idyllwild, CA

Reaching out in love

The Way of Love has a wide embrace.

The cross in perspective

Lord Jesus Christ, you stretched out your arms of love on the hard wood of the cross that everyone might come within the reach of your saving embrace: So clothe us in your Spirit that we, reaching forth our hands in love, may bring those who do not know you to the knowledge and love of you; for the honor of your Name. Amen.

The Book of Common Prayer, 101

This prayer for mission from the Office of Morning Prayer beautifully proclaims a truth we (as Christ-followers in the Anglican tradition) hold dear: Christ did stretch out his arms of love on the hard wood of the cross so that the whole world might know the embrace of God’s love. We boldly ask God for the same Spirit, the same grace. May it be so. ~Fr. Dan

Be well. Do good. Pay attention. Keep learning

Image: ChurchArt.com

A heart overflowing with compassion

An angel to minister in a time of great need.

Archangel Raphael

Loving God, your heart overflows with compassion for your whole creation. Pour out your Spirit on all persons living with illness for which we have no cure, as well as their families and loved ones. Help them to know that you claim them as your own, deliver them from fear and pain, and send your archangel Raphael to minister to their needs; for the sake of Jesus Christ, our Savior. Amen.

A Prayer “For People with Diseases for Which There is No Cure” in  Enriching Our Worship 2, p. 65

Even when there is no cure there can be peace as one falls into the presence and peace of a loving and compassionate God. And, there is the hope that from this heart overflowing with compassion an angel will be sent at just the right time to dispel fear and pain in the time of great need. Perhaps you will be that angel sent by God. ~Fr. Dan

Be well. Do good. Pay attention. Keep learning.

Image: Archangel Attunements