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February 25, 2009


John McCollum

A fair number of Vineyard people celebrate it too.

Chris Ridgeway

Ash Wednesday is something I'm way new to since hitting seminary. Last year was the first service I had ever participated in: first time I had been "ashed" or what have you.

This year, I made it point to attend.

I'm still uncertain what I think about certain Lenten practices... but the theme of Ash Wednesday--dust to dust--I find essential and comforting.

I realized that in my own way in the last 10 years, I've made this a part of my own spiritual formation, and then passed it on the church. My "practice" had been to go semi-regularly to a cemetary, walk the rows of headstones, and pray. I found it a remarkably comforting and confronting time... remembering that this is where I will end up: in the ground. Having God present with me, it really resets my view of him, and of my priorities.

It became central enough to me that I'd take other friends or mentorees with me occasionally to experience the same thing. And originally, it was passed to me from a long-ago mentor.

So in some way we had been passing along the same formational plank that Ash Wednesday carries.

I'm still in the process of evaluating the more liturgical/church calendar/"high church" events that I had not been familiar before. Some I will learn from, but still am not inclined to bring into the life of the church. But Ash Wednesday I like.

Charles P. Squanto

the lyrics go:

At the moment of surrender
Of vision over visibility

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