Bishop Alan’s Lent Message
17th February 2021
“Come now … flee for a while from your tasks,
hide yourself for a little space from the turmoil of your thoughts.
Come, cast aside your burdensome cares,
and put aside your laborious pursuits.
For a little while, give your time to God, and rest in him.
Enter into the chamber of your mind,
shut out all things save God and whatever may aid you in seeking God;
and having barred the door of your chamber, seek him.” (St Anselm)
Lent is a time to declutter, make space for God and get our lives back in perspective. Ash Wednesday, like Covid-19, confronts us with the transience of life and our mortality: ‘Remember that you are dust and to dust you shall return’. By making time to read the scriptures, pray, worship and fast God gives us grace and strength to ‘Turn away from sin and be faithful to Christ’.
During this pandemic it has been all too easy to lose hope. Lent is a time to re-establish patterns of prayer, rest and exercise as we look to the future.
I invite you to join me in meditating (in the words of our Living God’s Love prayer, below) on how we might live this season with ‘generosity and joy, imagination and courage’ as we journey together to Easter.
draw us deeper into your love;
Jesus our Lord,
send us to care and serve;
make us heralds of good news.
Stir us, strengthen us,
teach and inspire us
to live your love
with generosity and joy,
imagination and courage;
for the sake of your world
and in the name of Jesus,