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Lent and Easter

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We have several Lenten

 resources available.

 

Look for them on the side table in the sanctuary. They are: the Table Prayer Tent, a Lenten resource created by Bread for the World; our own Union Church weekly Lenten Guide with scripture, reflection, meditation, prayer, and even recipes, which you can download here;  and a Lenten Meditation Practices Guide (see below) with weekly meditation practices compiled by Kathryn Henderson.

 

 

Lenten Meditation Practices 

 

The season of Lent is a wonderful time to step back a bit from normal routines and take time out for reflection and renewal. There is a great diversity of spiritual practices to support you in this, some of which are described briefly here. If you’re interested in learning more about any of these suggestions or resources, please contact Kathryn Henderson, either on Sundays or at  kathryn@ucw.org. She’d love to talk with you!

 

 

“Who Do You Say I Am?”

Lenten Study and Reflection Group

Who was Jesus, really? Was he a teacher, or revolutionary? Perhaps a philosopher, or the Jewish Messiah? Kathryn Henderson invites you to explore these questions during Lent as part of a discussion group on the historical Jesus. Studying this fascinating topic is a way to deepen our understandings of who Jesus is, both in history and in our faith lives.

 

The group will read excerpts of “The Shadow of the Galilean” as a basis for discussion and personal reflection. This is a classic novel, told from the perspective of Andreas, a man coerced by the Romans to spy on Jesus and his followers. Through the adventures and encounters of Andreas we discover what it was like to be a Jew in first-century Palestine, and learn the various perspectives on who Jesus was in his own time, and his impact on those around him. To read more about this  this engaging and thought-provoking book, you can  go here.
 
The discussions will be held at 11:30 a.m. for about 90 minutes on February 17 and 24, and March 10, 17, and 24. It’s fine to drop in, and come to as many meetings as you’re able. It is not essential to read the book, but it is entertaining if you have the time. If you have any questions please email Kathryn or catch her after a Sunday worship service.

 

 

Meditation Drop-ins

 

Would you like to learn more about meditation or practice with a group? We’ll be meeting in Stacy’s office on March 2, 16,, and 30, and April 13, and you can take part as frequently as you’d like.  From 9:30 to 10:00  a.m. Kathryn will meet with anyone interested in receiving instruction or guidance with specific meditation practices. From 10:00 to 11:00, the entire group will meet for meditation and conversation about related topics.  If you have any questions, please email  kathryn@ucw.org.

 

Consider Walking the Labyrinth as part of your Lenten practice.

We are used to prayer as being all about words.  Whether spoken aloud or silently, we pray by speaking to God that which is on our hearts.  But there is another form of prayer that involves not so much our words but our feet.  Walking the Labyrinth is a form of body prayer, a walking practice of meditation/contemplation that draws one closer and closer to the quiet center where one can be still and know God.  

It is important to bear in mind that a labyrinth is not a maze.  There are no dead ends.  There is a way in and a way out, and it is impossible to get lost.  This is because the intent of the labyrinth is not to confuse.  Instead it is a way to gain greater clarity by engaging the metaphor of journey, both physically and spiritually. 

        “While archeological evidence of labyrinths has been found dating back to 4500 BCE. in Egypt and Central Italy, the Christian use of the labyrinth began in the  twelfth century.  At this time, pilgrimage to the Holy Land was becoming  increasingly dangerous and expensive, and so labyrinths were laid down in the flooring of cathedrals.  In this way, instead of making a physical pilgrimage to their spiritual home in Jerusalem, Christians could walk a symbolic pilgrimage on a labyrinth.  They turned a physical journey into a spiritual journey.[1]

 

So we invite you to take time to walk the labyrinth this Lent either during our Contemplative Prayer Service on Wednesday mornings at 7:30 a.m.; before or after our worship service on Sundays; or any other time you may happen to be at church.

 

[1] Donna Schaper and Carole Ann Camp. “Labyrinths From the Outside In:  Walking to Spiritual Insight, A Beginner’s Guide. ( Skylight Paths Publishing: Woodstock, VT.2000). p. 6

 

 Lenten Fast Reflection 

For those who have engaged in the Lenten practice of fasting, this will be a time to reflect on what we have experienced as a community of faith.  We will meet at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 27.                                                                                                                                                                

 

 

Maundy Thursday

 

On Thursday evening, March 28 Union Church will hold a Tenebrae service. We will begin at 6:15 p.m. with a light supper in the Vestry and then will transition  into a meditative Tenebrae Service of song and scripture as we meditate on Jesus’ betrayal, arrest, and death.  Child care will be available.  A sign-up sheet for this service is in the side chapel.  Please RSVP so that the deacons can plan for the food.

 

 

 Stations of the Cross

Good Friday  Visiting the Episcopal Monastery

On Good Friday, Kathryn Henderson will be going to the Stations of the Cross service at Society of St. John the Evangelist in Cambridge, and welcomes you to join her. The group will probably leave at 10:45 a.m. on March 29. Final travel arrangements will be made the week before. If you’d like to know more, please ask Kathryn after church or email her at kathryn@ucw.org. You can also check out the society’s website: www.ssje.org and the recent Boston Globe article. 

 

 

Easter Vigil

Holy Saturday Vigil, Saturday, March 30th at 7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.  Join us for this time to reflect on all that has transpired during Holy Week and to anticipate the coming dawn of Easter.  During this service we will share in the Lord’s Supper and reaffirm our baptismal vows.  If you have never been baptized and would like to be baptized during this beautiful and meditative service, please see Stacy.  (Stacy@ucw.org).

 

 

 

Easter Sunday

 

Join us for a joyous celebration of Easter. We will worship at 10:00 a.m. on Easter morning, March 31.

The children will enjoy an Easter Egg Hunt following the service.