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Ash Wednesday, February 17, 2021

February 17, 2021







MUSIC “Adagio in G Minor” Tomaso Albinoni (1671-1751)
Diane Plouffe Violin 1&2
Pictures of Historical Communion Chalices and Cups for the OCC

Good evening and welcome to our online service for Ash Wednesday. In light of the current pandemic and the health advisories to remain safe, we are offering our Ash Wednesday order in our recorded video format which we also use for Sunday morning worship. Lent is a holy time for Christians around the world, and we join in Spirit with all our faith companions as we begin our spiritual journey towards Jesus’ way of the Cross.

HYMN            When I survey this Wondrous Cross


Greetings! With a humble heart, I invite you to join with Christians all around the world to observe a season of holy lent. For forty days, we walk with Jesus to the Cross and towards the great day of Easter Resurrection!

Traditions include daily meditations, increased community service and charitable giving, and for many, we choose to give something up as a reminder that we are more than our wants, needs, and desires in the body. Ash Wednesday reminds us that we are born perishable, but we put on imperishability through the Spirit.

In the creation story we hear God saying to us, “by the sweat of your face you shall eat bread, till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; for you are dust, and to dust you shall return.” And we hear God proclaim through the prophet Isaiah, “The Spirit of the Lord shall comfort all who mourn, to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes.”

To God, we are never lost. To God we are always alive in the Spirit.
So on this first day of Lent, when the days and nights are changing their length in the journey to Spring,
let us offer ourselves to God in the Spirit knowing that by faith, we are always returning home to the Lord.
Ashes to ashes, dust to dust, body and soul, we are always at one with the Lord through the Spirit.

PRAYER OF ASHES from Psalm 51

Holy God, let these ashes be to us a sign that our life is ever in your hands.
As we are marked by the sign of the cross, we are marked as belonging to you forever.
Help us to enter the way of Jesus, the way of the cross, to deny ourselves, and serve with love.
May all our sacrifices of time and gifts be holy and return compassion and life to the world.
Have mercy on us, O God, according to your steadfast love.
In your abundant mercy, blot out all our transgressions.
Wash us from all our sins.
Have us desire truth in our innermost being.
Teach us the wisdom from the depth of our heart.
Wash us by faith, that our souls may be white as snow.
Let us hear joy and gladness again.
Create in us a clean heart, O God.
Put a new and right spirit within us.
Return to us the joy of your salvation,
And, may your Holy Spirit be ever with us. Amen.

May the Lord bless you and keep you. May the Lord watch over you with saving grace. Amen

MUSIC “Troubles, Trials, Tribulations”    American Folk Song     Eliana Cetto, soloist