The Parish Church of St George the Martyr, Waterlooville


Easter is late this year, so late that by the time we get to Mothering Sunday I expect most of the daffodils will be over. With Easter being late, it means of course, that Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent are also late - Ash Wednesday this year is March 9th. That means there’s plenty of time to get ready for Lent and to think how you, as a Christian, are going to mark this special season which projects you towards the most important festival of the Church year - Easter, the resurrection of Jesus Our Lord.

But of course, Lent can be a busy time. It falls in spring so there’s always a lot to do in the garden to get it ready for summer. It runs into the exam season so for those at school or college, and for their families, it’s a very stressful time with loads of revision and arguments. It includes Mothering Sunday - a day marked by different family traditions all of which demand extra cooking, cleaning and other domestic preparations. In the Church Lent prepares us for Holy Week and Easter, and that means a great deal of work for the musicians, the servers, the sacristan, the flower arrangers, the Sunday School leaders - in fact everyone at St. George’s. Then as a season of the Church year, you’re expected to attend extra services and possibly to take on extra responsibilities too. Lent is a very busy time!

So there’s a list of reasons why you shouldn’t take part in this year’s Lent Task Calendar, and no doubt you can add your own reasons and excuses too. But maybe because Lent is such a busy time, and maybe because it does prepare us to celebrate the resurrection of Our Lord it is exactly the reason why you should take part!

The Task Calendar is not to make you feel guilty. It’s not to make you spend a long time away from your family, but it does invite you to stop, and to take just a few moments each day doing something which you choose to do. The Calendar includes lots of ideas. You may decide to save a bit of extra water, for example, or to read a passage from the Bible.

You can also choose to say something positive to someone you meet or to donate to a foodbank collection. In a busy time, those few moments doing one of the Lent tasks can become very precious and very helpful.

Every member of St. George’s Church - children, young people and adults - will be invited to take a Lent Task Calendar home. Please take it, look at it and decide how you are going to use it to mark Lent 2011.

Fr. Mike

Winter Edition 2011

From the Parish Priest