Tradition prepares Christians for Easter

Published 8:23 pm Tuesday, February 27, 2018


A tradition for some area churches and Christians is occurring again, including today and in coming weeks. That tradition is the annual Lenten Luncheon series.

This year, the Lenten Luncheon series takes place at First Baptist Church in Washington. The hour-long event begins with a 30-minute worship service in the church’s sanctuary followed by a soup-and-sandwich meal in the church’s Family Life Center. The Lenten Luncheons, which begin at noon, are scheduled for today, March 7, March 14 and March 21.

Ministers from area churches will lead the worship services. Each week, a different church will provide the soup and sandwiches.

The Rev. Joshua Yoder from Christ Church (Anglican) leads today’s service. The Rev. Ken Hall from Washington’s First United Methodist Church will lead the March 7 service. The Rev. Jacob W. Kines Jr. From First Christian Church of Washington will lead the March 14 service. The Rev. Lee Kinney from Washington’s First Presbyterian Church will lead the March 21 service. In recent years, attendance at each event has averaged about 100 people.

The Rev. Greg Barmer, senior pastor at First Baptist Church, believes the Lenten Luncheon series helps prepare Christians for the upcoming Easter observance.

“I think the intentional preparation that we go through and stopping our business and understanding the significance of Lent and preparation for the Resurrection is important. We love to go from celebration to celebration without stopping to dwell on the significance of our sin, of our failures and of Christ’s sacrifice because of that. This series helps us do that as a community,” Barmer said.

The Lenten season is 40 days (traditionally), not counting Sundays, and a solemn observance in the liturgical year of many Christian denominations. Different denominations calculate Lent by various methods. Lent leads up to Easter Sunday. The purpose of Lent is to prepare Christians for Easter through prayer, penance, repentance, self-denial and alms-giving.

In Western Christianity, Ash Wednesday marks the start of Lent and concludes Maundy Thursday.




About Mike Voss

Mike Voss is the contributing editor at the Washington Daily News. He has a daughter and four grandchildren. Except for nearly six years he worked at the Free Lance-Star in Fredericksburg, Va., in the early to mid-1990s, he has been at the Daily News since April 1986.
Journalism awards:
• Pulitzer Prize for Meritorious Public Service, 1990.
• Society of Professional Journalists: Sigma Delta Chi Award, Bronze Medallion.
• Associated Press Managing Editors’ Public Service Award.
• Investigative Reporters & Editors’ Award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Public Service Award, 1989.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Investigative Reporting, 1990.
All those were for the articles he and Betty Gray wrote about the city’s contaminated water system in 1989-1990.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Investigative Reporting, 1991.
• North Carolina Press Association, Third Place, General News Reporting, 2005.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Lighter Columns, 2006.
Recently learned he will receive another award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Lighter Columns, 2010.
4. Lectured at or served on seminar panels at journalism schools at UNC-Chapel Hill, University of Maryland, Columbia University, Mary Washington University and Francis Marion University.

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