The 40-day season of Lent, a time when the church focuses on "the need all Christians have to renew their repentance and faith” (BCP p. 265) starts on Ash Wednesday, February 14th, 2018. This year Lent at Emmanuel will have a communal shape.
This holy season begins with the imposition of ashes as a sign of our mortality and repentance for our sins. As we receive the ashes, we hear the words “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return” (Genesis 3.19). The ashes are imposed in the form of a cross, the sign of how the saving work of Jesus can overcome the power of death in us and in all creation.
Traditionally, Episcopalians (with much of the Western church) have fasted from all solid food on Ash Wednesday so that our physical hunger for food can point us to our greater spiritual hunger for God. If you are unable to fast for an entire day, then consider fasting from one meal, eating only a small amount of simple food at each meal, or taking another action that will allow you to feel hungry today.
As we begin our shared Lenten pilgrimage at Emmanuel we will offer three Masses with imposition of ashes: 7am, 12:15pm, and 7pm (with choir). Make time to take part.