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05 Mar

Ash Wednesday

Music for Ash Wednesday

Article

Music scores in Sibelius and pdf for Ash Wednesday.

Music for Ash Wednesday »

Ash Wednesday Video

Article

Simplicity and spareness, quiet and focus: These are the atmospheric touchstones for the Ash Wednesday service.  The ritual in the current Book of Worship offers the shape for this service that has been kept worldwide for centuries. No sermon is needed here. Perhaps the briefest of homilies, perhaps even just a series of words, as in this simple video by Greg Feightner. 

Ash Wednesday Video »

Ash Wednesday

Article

Ash Wednesday marks the first day, or the start of the season of Lent.  

Ash Wednesday »

Ash Wednesday Reflections: The Acknowledgement of Sin

Article

People of the Bible grappled with the concept of individual sin as well as that of corporate sin. Sometimes their prayers were for individual sin(s); and at other times, they all stood and confessed that their country had sinned. 

Ash Wednesday Reflections: The Acknowledgement of Sin »

A Corporate Prayer of Confession for Ash Wednesday

Article

O, God, when we pause to look back at our lives on this Ash Wednesday, we realize that we have been weighed in the balance and found wanting. 

A Corporate Prayer of Confession for Ash Wednesday »

Ash Wednesday Litany of Reconciliation and Litany Leading to Prayer

Liturgy

We who are weary come home.  Come home from sin and home from shame. Come home from dishonor and home from disdain. Come home to be made whole, come home for nourishment of the soul.  

Ash Wednesday Litany of Reconciliation and Litany Leading to Prayer »

Brief Form for the Burning of Palms

Article

This service is designed as an act of gathering outdoors before entry into the worship space. It may be offered immediately before a service for Ash Wednesday or at an earlier day and time. If it is offered immediately before the Ash Wednesday service, remember to plan so as to allow ample time for the ashes to cool before they are administered. 

Brief Form for the Burning of Palms »

Contemporary Service for Ash Wednesday

Article

In 2010, I received a request for a “contemporary” Ash Wednesday service. This was a first for this office, to my knowledge. Typically, we’ve commended using the ritual in the Book of Worship because it does what this service needs to do and because it does so using highly ecumenically recognizable language and symbols and standard United Methodist resources.

Contemporary Service for Ash Wednesday »

Oración Comunitaria de Confesión para Miércoles de Cenizas (Basada en el Salmo 51.3)

Article

Oh Dios, cuando pausamos en este Miércoles de Cenizas, y miramos hacia atrás a nuestras vidas, nos percatamos que se nos ha pesado en la balanza y mucho ha quedado por decir.  

Oración Comunitaria de Confesión para Miércoles de Cenizas (Basada en el Salmo 51.3) »

Prayers for Ash Wednesday

Article

Purifying Mystery, your light exposes in us all that we hide.Awaken us and all your Holy Church to spiritual combat. 

Prayers for Ash Wednesday »

Reflections on Ash Wednesday

Article

I received the little urn of ashes from the pastor in the prayer chapel not long after the sun had risen in the east. Like an ancient healer, she had mixed in anointing oil, to give the grey leavings "body," she said. I studied the beautiful earthenware container she had carefully chosen for this sending forth to the frail. It was different from other ash-holding urns, as there was an open hole in the top -- an escape perhaps, or maybe just a way back to life. 

Reflections on Ash Wednesday »

Smudges on the Soul: A Meditation for Ash Wednesday

Article

I would rather wear the smudge on my forehead than to admit its residence upon my soul. I prefer a crude cross above my eyes to questions about runny mascara and smudged liner. 

Smudges on the Soul: A Meditation for Ash Wednesday »

Worship Resources for Ash Wednesday

Article

Get ready; get ready to return to God. Place your trust in God and God alone! 

Worship Resources for Ash Wednesday »

Water and Ashes Do Not Mix!

Article

Lent begins with Ash Wednesday. More and more congregations are including "The Imposition of Ashes" in their worship on Ash Wednesday. It makes sense to do this, given the name of the day and the service; but the truth is, many Protestant churches have held the service without the use of ashes. For many, it was seen as "too catholic." And many Protestant churches were intolerant of such symbolic gestures. 

Water and Ashes Do Not Mix! »

“Dust and Ashes”

Article

The worship song "Dust and Ashes," in appropriately emotional and expressive musical style and textual content, recalls these Lenten and Ash Wednesday themes and sets the right tone for the day and the season. It is an ideal song to use on Ash Wednesday during the imposition of ashes or as a congregational song during the service.

“Dust and Ashes” »

Changer:  A Prayer Poem for Ash Wednesday

Article

Cover me with ashes,
the thick-smoke soot of the earth.
Make my breathing like the journey
from death into life -- second by second,
prayer by prayer. 

Changer:  A Prayer Poem for Ash Wednesday »

Making Ash Wednesday Accessible for Children

Article

Ash Wednesday can be among the most accessible of rituals in our liturgy for children and their families, IF it's not handled in a "stuffy" or overly formalistic way. The symbols involved are basic and very tangible. Children get this!  

Making Ash Wednesday Accessible for Children »

Chuck Knows Ash Wednesday

Video

Ever seen a little smudge mark on someone's forehead as they walk out of church? That's a sign of the cross, and it means it's Ash Wednesday during Lent. Chuck, GBOD's humorous philosopher and knower of church things, tells you about this important worship service in this episode from the series Chuck Knows Church.

Chuck Knows Ash Wednesday »