Lent 2024

Lent is a time to draw close to God through prayer, repentance, fasting, reading scripture, and giving alms. These spiritual disciplines are important throughout the whole of our lives and especially during Lent as we prepare to remember our Lord’s journey to the cross and celebrate His joyful resurrection at Easter. Below are resources for all ages to help you observe a holy Lent.

Ash Wednesday is the beginning of Lent. You’re invited to join us on this solemn day as we pray together in repentance and to have ashes marked in the shape of a cross on our foreheads as the words, “Remember you are dust and to dust you shall return” are said. By participating we join with our sisters and brothers around the world in the church catholic and in the historic tradition of the church. 

Services are at 12pm (short with the imposition of ashes) and 7pm service (includes scripture readings, music, a brief homily, the imposition of ashes, and Holy Communion).

Ever wondered why ashes are used?

Ashes are a biblical and ancient sign of:

  • our mortality (we all die one day, and our bodies will return to dust – see Genesis 3:19) and
  • repentance (see Job 42:6, Daniel 9:3, Esther 14:1-3).

In the Bible ashes were an outward sign, that everyone could see, of the turning of a person’s heart back to God and away from sin that was happening on the inside (repentance). On special holy days the whole community would join in and other times it was individuals.

Since at least the eleventh century followers of Jesus have been marked with ashes on Ash Wednesday and many also fast (abstain from food) in order to draw closer to God.

Families and Youth Devotional/Resources for Lent

Below are devotionals for families and youth to use during the season of Lent. Whether you regularly use a devotional or this would be your first time trying one, have a look and choose one or more to use during Lent. A devotional can help you maintain a spiritual practice of reading scripture, praying, and drawing closer to God. If you have questions, please email our Associate Minister for Children and Youth, Naomi Suggs at childrenandyouth@allsaintskingsway.ca

Ash Wednesday: A Guide for Youth

Lent: A Guide for Youth

Reflections on the Heart: Lent for Families

Where Your Heart Is: An Illustrated Devotional

Follow Me: Lent Devotional for Young People

Daily Lenten Activities for Familie

Lectio for Families – is a free app that helps families read the Bible and explore faith through conversation and prayer together.

Tuesdays @ APrayer in the Night: For Those Who Work or Watch or WeepSK resumes on Tue, Feb 20 with dinner at 6pm and our book study at 7pm. We are finished by 8pm each week. 

We are reading the book called Prayer in the Night: For Those Who Work or Watch or Weep

Copies are available in the church office for $25. Please email office@allsaintskingsway.ca to request a copy. Copies are also available for any who would like to participate and can’t afford a copy, please email Rev. Patrick or Rev. Brian.

All are welcome to join! No previous Bible study experience needed.

All are welcome on Sunday, March 3 to attend a Lent Lunch & Learn with Dr. Joseph Mangina, Professor of Systematic Theology at Wycliffe College. We will meet in the Wilkinson room immediately after the 10am service. Professor Mangina will also be our guest preacher at the 10am service that morning. He will be talking to us about the sacraments, so bring all your questions!

All are invited to attend. You can register by clicking here. There is no charge for this session, but you may give, if you’re able, toward the cost of lunch.

Spiritual disciplines for followers of Jesus are actions we engage in regularly that draw us closer to God. In Lent there are 3 practices that are traditional – prayer, fasting, and almsgiving (giving to those in need). These practices are important in our daily lives and especially as we prepare to remember Jesus’ journey to the cross and to celebrate His joyful resurrection.

Committing yourself to a spiritual discipline during the season of Lent is a great way to intentionally draw closer to God.

Prayer – 

If you wonder, ‘how do I pray?’, you aren’t alone. Jesus’ disciples wondered the same and so they asked Jesus to teach them to pray (Luke 11). Jesus told them they should pray in the words of what we know as The Lord’s Prayer. Saying the prayer Jesus taught His followers is a great place to begin when praying.

Jesus said, “This is how you should pray: “Father, may your name be kept holy. May your Kingdom come soon. Give us each day the food we need, and forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us. And don’t let us yield to temptation.” (Luke 11:2-4).

That’s not the only prayer you can pray!

  • You can pray in our own words too
  • You can talk to God the same way you speak to a friend
  • You don’t have to use big words or fancy language
  • You can be who you are with God

A simple formula to help you use your own words when praying is:

  • Give thanks to God for God’s many blessings & anything else you’re thankful for
  • Ask God’s forgiveness for things you’ve done, thought, or said that are sins against God
  • Ask God’s help for you and for all who need it (sick, poor, hungry, homeless, refugees, those places in the world where there is war or natural disaster)

Download “The Daily Prayer” app from the Church of England. It has an audio option for Morning and Evening Prayer and also the option for you to pray it yourself.

Pray as You Go is a website and app that you can use daily. It provides a daily recording and instructed meditation

Fasting –

Fasting is a spiritual discipline where you go without food in order to seek God for a special purpose. From the earliest days of the church, fasting has been recognized as an important way to draw near to God, to deepen your relationship with God, and to ask God’s help in special times of need.

For example, after Jesus returned to heaven His followers fasted every Friday to remember the day Jesus was crucified on and to give special thanks to God for Him. Also, since the 4th century Christians have fasted during Lent as a way of preparing themselves to celebrate Holy Week and Easter. Even Moses, Elijah, and Jesus fasted for 40 days!

You can fast for one meal, for one day, for lunch for a week, or from chocolate for all of Lent. For more about fasting, read what Jesus taught about it in Matthew 6:16-18

Practical Tips for Fasting

Bible Reading –

Using “The Daily Prayer” app (see above) and the “Pray as You Go” app or website (see above) both include daily scripture readings.

Women of Holy Week is a series of nine stories about nine different, but interlinked, women written by Paula Gooder, originally as Holy Week, Easter, and Ascension Day reflections for Southwark Cathedral in 2021. 

Try YouVersion’s Bible app which includes hundreds of devotionals you can choose from.

Giving –

Almsgiving is the practice of giving to those in need. Giving is a subject that Jesus talked about alot, as well as helping those in need. So when we practice almsgiving, we are not only doing as the church has done for thousands of years, but also doing what Jesus taught His followers to do (Matt 6:2-4).

Giving alms can look like:

  • saving up money during Lent and donating it to a ministry at your church that helps those in need or to another organization that does (foodbank or homeless shelter)
  • giving your time to help those ministries and organizations that help those in need

By feeding the hungry, clothing those in need, visiting the lonely/isolated Jesus teaches that we have done the same to Him (Matt 25:37-40).

Consider giving in addition to your normal offerings during Lent. Below are all ministries/charities that All Saints supports throughout the year and other special times for certain appeals.

All Saints Sherbourne

Stonegate Ministries

PWRDF (The Primate’s World Relief & Development Fund) to support the Gaza and West Bank Emergency Response Fund – Donations can be made online, or over the phone by calling 416-822-9083 (or leave a message toll-free at 1-866-308-7973 and they will return your call.) You can also donate by mail. Send your cheque to PWRDF, 80 Hayden Street, 3rd Floor, Toronto, ON, Canada, M4Y 3G2.

You can also give a special offering to support the work and ministries at All Saints Kingsway (by e-transfer or through Canada Helps).