Because the local marathon routed past the church building and blocked access, we had Saturday evening worship for Lent 1.
Originally the church PTB had scheduled some kind of evening service – vespers? compline? ante-communion? service of the word that's not ante-communion? – no one consulted me and I didn't inquire, but the new interim pastor assured me we'd have Holy Communion, so I knew I had to be there. And her word was "communion," not Eucharist. How fitting for the season of Lent when we often plan and try to live more simply, less extravagantly, to pare down to plain essentials—Walter Brueggemann tells us Holy Communion is pre-eucharist. In Communion the gathered assembly becomes community as the triune God whose essence is covenantal communion meets us together in Word and Sacrament.
From the Green Season of Pentecost 2010, here's some of what I need to consider from now through the remainder – the rest – of Lent: [Gilgal] Bethel [Jericho, Jordan] . A paraphrased excerpt:
We've been to Gilgal, the place of rolling away doubts, pasts, fears, transgressions, regrets and anything else that's gotten in the way. Now we need to get to God's House, to Beth-El!
From Gilgal to Bethel into Jericho, all of us carry burdens, joys, regrets, disappointments, and questions from previous phenomenological and psychological locations. Jericho is the place of often counter-cultural, counter-intuitive obedience and radical trust. At Jericho we prepare for Jordan, for "...the focal drama of baptism, which is a subversive act of renunciation and embrace summoning us 'from our several enslavements ... to a common, liberated obedience.'" [Walter Brueggemann's words]
Does that sound like our journey through Lent into Easter Vigil, baptism, and the first Eucharist of Easter?