Don’t look now, but pre-Lent Sundays are heading your way. Formerly known by their numerical designations—e.g., Septuagesima—these days were markers for what was surely coming: The tones and tunes of Lent. Those names may have been removed, but not the themes: “Get ready! Lent is coming!”
For a couple of years now, I have had conversations with a team of remarkable *consultants. Their recent emphases—starting in Advent—have included the idea of getting ready. Now their work focuses on the title, “Relentless Lent,” and the perhaps-surprising ideas that tag along. That’s why I’m inviting you to take a look at how their witness could enrich this season of the church year. How these ideas might help your congregation’s Lenten observances.
When we talked about that possibility awhile back, “relentless” really jumped out at me. I was struck by how this word captures so much of what’s happening in all of our lives. How that concept fits older adults. So many meanings and synonyms for that word, so many invitations for attitudes and disciplines framed by Lent. So many emotions, so much practicality.
A series of blogs and other resources present new Lenten disciplines that can develop into lively spiritual practices—habits useful for daily life that can move into the swirling contexts that surround all of us right now.
I’m looking forward to what this theme will offer during the weeks preceding Lent, as well as during the days we devote to the special quality of this evocative season of the church year.
As for Septuagesima and its liturgical cousins, I’ll just keep that to myself…
*These sisters call themselves Intentional Energy3 (or IE3). Their name is a clue that they know how to bring vitality to organizations—including congregations—that are looking past what’s obvious towards hopeful futures. You can find them—and their Relentless Lent resources—at https://www.intentionalenergy3.com .