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Lent is one of the few seasons in our lives when we are invited in a formal way to reflect on what it is like to be human, to be limited, to be mortal. So much of what the world tries to sell is eternal youth, happiness, and comfort. In the church, we know that simply isn’t true. Lent is a time to look into the corners of our souls, our families, our businesses, and our parish to see where the cobwebs are. Perhaps we need to be more in prayer, more in fasting. Maybe, we are being asked to give more of our time or our wealth to create a more just world. I’m not sure what your souls look like, but I know that mine could always use a good dusting.

~Fr. Burch

Join Us on Our Lenten Journey

Ash Wednesday, February 26

7:30 a.m.          Eucharist & Imposition of Ashes
12–2 p.m.         Prayer & Imposition of Ashes
6 p.m.                Eucharist & Imposition of Ashes

Thursdays, 6 p.m. — One Book, One Parish

Many churches throughout the Christian world add worship services or times of study during the season of Lent (i.e., the forty days of special fasting and prayer before Easter Sunday). Our version of this is the One Book + One Parish initiative. Each year, we select a book to read during Lent. Those who are able, gather for discussion, fellowship, and a simple soup supper on Thursday nights at 6 p.m., beginning March 5. Those who cannot join us are welcome to read and follow along with study questions posted on our Facebook page. This year’s book is Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith by Anne Lamott. Thirty copies of the book will be available for $10 at the back of the church, or you can order it from your favorite bookseller. Mark your calendars for the Thursdays in Lent; I look forward to seeing you there. Discussion and supper in the Parish Hall. Come to the first session having read the overture. If you’re willing to bring soup for the first session, email me.

~Fr Burch

Poetry in Lent

This year, we’re adding an opportunity for the season on Lent: Poetry in Lent. Join me Sunday evenings as we explore the ways we might use the study, recitation, memorization, and writing of poetry as a Lenten discipline (it’s customary to mark the season of Lent with special study or prayer or fasting). We will meet at 5 p.m. in the Library to encounter poets like Mary Oliver, George Herbert, Maya Angelou, Anna Akhmatova, and Christian Wiman. Anyone who would like can walk with me across the street to Bel Air for dinner, so bring some pocket money. RSVP or just show up. 

~Fr. Burch

Silence in Lent

Silence is a part of prayer, and we will explore the ways that silence can set a tone for worship during the season of Lent. The 8 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. Eucharists on Sundays, as well as the 6 p.m. on Wednesdays, will begin with a period of silence for prayer and meditation to prepare ourselves for worship. At the 9:30 a.m. service, we will intone a bell to begin and then end the silence. You may pray or silence your mind in your own way, or you are welcome to use the prayers in the Book of Common Prayer beginning on page 810, particularly prayer 64 on page 833. 

Lenten Drive: Laundry Soap Needed for Laundry Love

What is Laundry Love? A monthly event that provides washing and drying services to those in need. We average 120 loads of laundry every month (about $600 of washing and drying).

Who benefits? Anyone who shows up! Most people using a laundromat live at or near poverty.

Why Laundry Love? Clean clothes and bedding are a crucial part of maintaining good hygiene, looking and feeling good, feeling the dignity each of us deserve.

What do we need? 100oz (or larger) bottles of laundry soap. We have fabulous volunteers and a steady funding stream, we just need the soap!

Laundry Love is coordinated by the Hospitality Center, an outreach ministry of the Episcopal Diocese of Milwaukee. The Hospitality Center seeks to provide hospitality and needed services to those who are homeless, underserved, and living in poverty in Racine, Wisconsin. 

Wednesday Night Eucharist

If you are looking to add more worship to your life during Lent, this is a friendly reminder that St. Mark’s has a Wednesday night Eucharist in the Chapel of the Bread of Life on Wednesday nights at 6 p.m. The short, spoken service is followed by fellowship and simple snacks.

20s & 30s Lenten Prayer Reflections

All adults in their 20s & 30s are invited to join our Lenten Prayer Reflections every Monday evening during the month of March. Join us from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. as we share dinner together while watching and discussing Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby’s video series on exploring and expanding our prayer lives. For any questions about this event, to RSVP, or to share any dietary restrictions, please email Matt Phillips.

UTO Blue Boxes | Lenten Offering for Families

Throughout the Lenten season, your family can count and give thanks for your blessings by collecting change in your United Thank Offering Blue Box. Boxes are available for you in our church school classrooms and at the back of the church beginning on Sunday, March 1. We will collect the boxes at church on Easter Sunday.