LENTEN CANDLE LITURGY
Reader 1: Today is the first Sunday in the Season of Lent.
This season offers us the opportunity to be more reflective as we journey together with Jesus through the wilderness and beyond.
Reader 2: As followers of Jesus, we have all experienced times of testing and temptation – times we have felt that we were travelling in the wilderness.
Reader 1: As people of faith we confess that in the face of difficult decisions we are sometimes drawn to easy answers and actions that do not demand much of us.
Reader 2: As we extinguish the first Lenten candle we recall the ways in which we struggle to embody our faith in the actions of our lives.
(Extinguishing of one Lenten candle)
Reader 1: As we watch the smoke rise, we remember that God’s spirit is with us in mysterious and tangible ways. We are reminded that God comforts, encourages and supports us as we face the challenges of following the Way of Jesus.
Reader 2: Knowing ourselves to be loved and blessed, we raise our voices in song – a prayer to you, O God.
SUNG RESPONSE: VU 121 (verse 1 for Lent)
From the dawning of creation,
you have loved us as your own;
stay with us through all temptation,
make us turn to you alone,
make us turn to you alone.
God of wilderness wanderings, when we are lost or feel alone, you are with us. When we lose hope and our faith falters in times of adversity and challenge, you are there ready to guide and inspire us. As we follow Jesus’ footsteps on our Lenten journey may we be open to your comforting and yet challenging presence among us. May we walk together with unity of heart and purpose as people of faith, hope and courage. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen