Lent and Easter in Lavenham

From the earliest of times Lent has been a time of self-examination, penitence, self-denial, study, and preparation for Easter, to which alms-giving has traditionally been added.

Now is the healing time decreed

for sins of heart and word and deed

when we in humble fear record

the wrong that we have done the Lord.

(Latin, before 12th century)

Lent was also the traditional time when candidates for baptism were instructed in the Christian faith, and the whole Christian community was invited to join them in the process of study and repentance, the extension of which over forty days would remind them of the forty days that Jesus spent in the wilderness, being tested by Satan.

Ashes are an ancient sign of penitence, and it became the practice to begin Lent by being marked in ash with the sign of the cross, a practice which we continue on “Ash Wednesday” (18th February 2015).   Our churches also reflect the penitential feel of this season, with Purple/Violet vestments and frontals being used, and flowers and decorations being removed.

As Holy Week approaches, the atmosphere of the season darkens, the readings begin to anticipate the story of Christ’s suffering and death.

Before on Easter Sunday, the church celebrates the resurrected Christ with great joy and hope.

We look forward to meeting you at any one of the events which take place in the benefice, be it our Ecumenical Lent Course, Lent Lunches or special services.

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