February 16, 2021
Kairos Vol. 6, Issue #4
We Are A Thriving United Methodist Church
Friends,

Here is information regarding Lent and its emphasis on penitential practices evolving slowly over the centuries.
 
During Early Christianity...
Baptism and penance were the key Lenten themes. During Lent, candidates prepared for Easter Baptism and persons did public penance for serious sins.
Later, the emphasis gradually shifted to private penance. Lent became a time of forgiveness and reconciliation for those who acknowledged their sinfulness.
 
During the Middle Ages...
Strict 40-day fasts (abstinence from meat and other foods) and not attending festivities were obligatory for Christians. Gradually, these practices became less rigid and demanding. An example: Marking the head with ashes began during the papacy of Gregory the Great (6th century A.D.) when public penitents came barefoot to church to perform penance for wrongdoing. In recognition that no one is free from sin and wishing to stand with penitents, friends and relatives began to come along. Soon ashes were given to the entire gathered assembly. The practice continues today and is widely practiced in many faith groups.
 
Today...
The emphasis has shifted from long periods of fasting to prayer, meditation, and reflection on the meaning of Easter. Lent is seen as a time of practicing extraordinary acts of devotion as one seeks to grow more into the likeness of Jesus Christ, rather than giving up something for Lent. Lent remains important as a time of reflection on ones' life and preparation for Easter.
 
Length of Lent...
Lent began as a three-day period of fasting and prayer prior to Easter, remembering Gethsemane, the trial, crucifixion, and death of Jesus, Thursday through Saturday. Later it was expanded to Holy week as Christians observed fasting and prayer for seven days prior to Easter. Then because of the importance of 40 days in religious history, Lent became a period of days. Six days a week for 6 weeks excluding Sundays. Plus four days including Ash Wednesday for the Beginning of Lent.

All of this was based on the following:
Moses fasted and prayed for 40 days during which time God gave him the 10 commandments as found in Exodus 34.
Elijah fled for his life through the wilderness as he fasted 40 days until he came to Mt. Horeb. Then God appeared and reminded him of his call to be faithful in I Kings 19.
Jesus withdrew to the desert for 40 days after his baptism where he fasted and prayed before beginning his public ministry.
 
Lenten Practices...
Fasting and prayer have been important observances since Biblical times. They have often preceded great religious revelations or events. When a church is making some special emphasis or financial drive for a cause, members are often invited to join in a special time of fasting and prayer.
 
So, we intentionally join in worship, classes, and Bible study during Lent to reflect on our relationship with God and each other as we confess our sins and claim God's grace and love anew in our lives.
 
In another email, please find a meditation for Ash Wednesday. This is shared since we are unable to gather for worship and have the ashes signed on our foreheads.

Marvin 
UNAFRAID LENTEN STUDY SCHEDULE
Mon, February 22, 10:00 am - Facilitator John & Judy Ferrin - Room 4

Tues, February 23, 10:00 am - Facilitator George Smoot - Zoom

Tues, February 23, 1:00 pm - Facilitator Christy Johnson - Room 4

Wed, February 24, 10:00 am - Facilitator Ron Young - Renaissance

Wed, February 24, 10:00 am - Facilitator Ginger Dolberg - Zoom

Thur, February 25, 10:00 am - Facilitator Judy Schimpf -25115 S Golfview

Thur, February 25, 3:00 pm - Facilitator Jerry Smith - Zoom

Sun, February 28, 9:00 am - Facilitator David Holling - Zoom
Worship Services
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Synagogue old
Universe with planet
Jonah boat
Stained Glass
Wooden Hearts
SWEET LIFE CAFE
Sweet Life Cafe
Sweet Life Cafe will start spring with a study by Andy Stanley titled "Why Easter Matters" on March 4 at 12:00 pm via Zoom.

In this Easter study, Andy Stanley looks at some of the people whose lives intersected with Jesus in the weeks leading to his crucifixion. Each of them had an agenda that put them at odds with God and Jesus. As you’ll see, there’s a little bit of them in all of us.

If you would like to join the study, call the Church office at (480) 895-8766 to sign up!
UMW NEWS
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At the UMWomen’s January 20th unit meeting, Sun Lakes UMC Counselor Mary Sievert offered some tips and strategies to deal with stress and anxiety during these “pandemic” times. We thought we’d share them with all of you as we found them to be valuable.

1. Move around/exercise.
2. Accept how you feel.
3. Put a lid on worry.
4. Accept how others feel.
5. Limit the news.
6. Structure your day.
7. Celebrate little wins.
8. Enjoy some humor.
9. Strengthen your spirituality.
10. It’s ok to do less.
11. Anticipate something each day.
12. Seek out people contact.
13. Watch your self-talk; use affirmations.
14. Go outside.
BUILDING LOAN UPDATE
Building Loan Jan 2021
YOUR LIBRARY
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Reading is fun!

  • The Book of God by Walter Wangerin Jr.
  • The Book of Success: Time-Tested Thoughts on How to Enjoy a Rich and Fulfilling Life edited by Richard Shea
  • The Dog That Talked to God by James Kraus
  • Happiness According to Jesus: What it Means to be Blessed by Bobby Schuller
  • Our Methodist Heritage by Mack B. Stokes
  • The Re-Enchantment of Everyday Life by Thomas Moore
  • Storm Warning by Billy Graham
  • Two From Galilee: The Story of Mary and Joseph by Marjorie Holmes

Also available are Suduko, Crosswords, and Word Search books available in the Conference Room.
LENTEN CHOCOLATE SPONGE CAKE
Lenten Cake
Lenten Cake Ingredients
Lenten Cake Instructions
LOVE AND SYMPATHY
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...to Lita Jean Mills, family, and friends on the death of her husband, Walter Mills, on Wednesday, January 27. A memorial service will be held out of state.

...to Barbara Ding, family, and friends on the death of her husband, George Ding, on Thursday, January 21. A memorial service will be held in the Dakotas.
9248 East Riggs Road, Sun Lakes, AZ 85248
Phone: 480-895-8766