Create in me a clean heart, O God,  and put a new and right spirit within me. (Ps 51:10)

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On March 2nd, 2019, fifty-two Mushers began the Iditarod, a one thousand mile dogsled race across the Alaskan wilderness.  Their sleds were laden with supplies to last between checkpoints, but weeks earlier, as part of race planning, they sent ahead provisions for the journey, following strict rules to ensure fairplay:

Rule 47 — Shipping of Food and Gear: A musher must comply with shipping directions provided by Iditarod Trail Committee. Each container must be clearly marked with name and destination and must weigh no more than 50 pounds.

While mushers know they cannot plan for every contingency, they prepare as best they can to meet the demands they know they will face in the wilderness. The provisions they ship ahead will determine whether they will finish the race. 

During the 40 days of Lent we provision our souls for the journey.

We begin our Lenten journey on February 26th at 6:00pm with Ash Wednesday services, observing the ancient practice of receiving the sign of the cross, remembering our humanity as told in Genesis 3:19: “Remember, human, that you are dust, and to dust, you will return.” 

Then, on the next five Wednesdays, March 4th through April 1st, we meet at 6:00pm to feed our bodies with soup made lovingly and from scratch, homemade bread, and family-tested desserts.  We share this good food together until 6:45, and then we feed our souls, gathering in the sanctuary for Evening Prayer, a brief service of song accompanied by our choir. We conclude by 7:00pm. 

In this way, we provision our bodies and souls for the journey ahead, readying ourselves for wilderness times, and preparing our hearts for Easter at our journey’s end. 

Lenten Bible Readings

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