Each week I wrestle and wonder while writing this column. Sometimes I’m wrestling with a question, often I’m wondering if anyone reads it – or if I have anything to say. This week I’m thinking about, and wrestling with, the idea of Lent. For many Christians this week marks the beginning of a period of reflection on faith and mortality, culminating with Good Friday and Easter.
I don’t know how many of you grew up observing the Lenten fast. I did not really know about it except through my Roman Catholic friends, who all grumbled about having to give up something for this period. Of course, as children the things they were giving up were simple – watching a favorite television program, or drinking soda, something like that.
I’ve been interested to see how some Unitarian Universalists have been picking up this practice of Lent in their lives, to deepen their own UU faith. Some take on a new commitment to give money to a different charity each week. Others post a photo a day on Facebook, using the word prompts from this calendar found here: https://www.facebook.com/259081167866768/photos/a.264920327282852/1085988321842711/
and here: https://barbsbantering.files.wordpress.com/2021/01/2021-uulent.pdf?fbclid=IwAR1dC4ijvP9aKLzT4Nm910Z3RFQepHrffaIqNUwWkN_lWRHMsKo_Bi07iDU.
Others meditate on, and/or journal about what these words evoke for them. One young adult wrote about their Unitarian Universalist Lenten practice a couple years ago, arguing that this is part of our Unitarian Universalist heritage. That article can be found here: https://www.uua.org/blueboat/faith/uu-lenten-covenantal-practice
Whether you choose to engage in a Lenten practice or not, I hope you’ll find some time to contemplate your own Unitarian Universalist faith as we move toward the time of new life in spring!
Thank you for being here & staying connected. I love you. Be well, and stay safe!
Rev. Lori Hlaban
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