Pastor Bill


Pastors Lent message        


Sisters and brothers in Christ,

After a brightening Time after Epiphany, we enter Lent. It has been a while since I can remember that all of the Sundays in Lent, as we title them, fit into one month, as it does this year.



Last month, I suggested being "belightful;" this month I would suggest we "lengthen."



The word "Lent," (i.e., the fast between Ash Wednesday and Easter) comes from the Old English form in the early twelfth (12th) century and Old High German languages. For the English, it means "springtime" or "spring;" whereas for the Germans, it means "lengthening [of days]."



For me, during spring people, places, and things lengthen. The daylight lengthens. Our daily activities lengthen because of the daylight. The bulbs in the ground lengthen to spring forth from the earth. We lengthen the time we prepare for our taxes. We grow by lengthening the amount of time we assess our humanity.



For the church, during the springtime we lengthen the time we spend focusing on the faith of Christ within our baptism. We dig deep and allow the shoots of faith to lengthen within us. We worship longer, study Scripture longer, we lengthen our reach out to the poor and those in need of healing. We lengthen our focus on the Cross of Christ Crucified and Raised.



This year we dig deeper into our understanding of the faith in Luther's Small Catechism on Sundays. See, elsewhere in this newsletter: Presiding Bishop Eaton's recent article from Living Lutheran, titled "We Are Broken."



On Wednesday evenings, we will ponder making changes. We will ponder on the change Jesus makes for us, the change he accomplishes for us, the change he has won for us, our community, and all humanity.



We will beg Jesus to remember us "Jesus, Remember Me" (ELW 616), to think longer on us longer "Lord Jesus, Think on Me" (ELW 599), to keep us near the Cross: "Jesus, Keep Me Near the Cross" (ELW 335).



This spring, will you change and lengthen your pondering on Jesus?



Lengthening with you the faith of Christ,


PBS | The Rev. William O. Schwochow, pastor










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