Welcome to Lent 2024 -
The Desert Will Bloom!
Thank you so much for signing up for this year's series. My wife Katharine and I look after the logistics of the series, which means - most importantly - that we're able to preserve a personal touch throughout. However, it does also mean that we might occasionally miss something!
Please contact us straight away if you ever think you've missed an e-mail or we haven't responded to your enquiry! We're here for you!
We start on Wednesday Feb 14th.
I'll send your reflections to arrive around sun-rise (in the UK). There are no e-mails on Saturdays or Sundays. Try, if you can, to create a regular ritual around where and when you pause to read it!
Responding via the 'RSVP' forum.
I'll explain how to respond once we get going. There's no pressure to. But the RSVPs (which I post on a web page just for the eyes of the community) do add a rich dimension to the series, so feel most welcome to contribute when invited.
I'll be inviting responses usually on a Wednesday, but please wait for the invitation which will come via the e-mail. I'll share the link to the RSVP page once we get going. Please don't post anything directly on it. Send responses to me, and I will put them up. I will sometimes lightly edit for the sake of clarity and brevity.
Friday YouTube Live sessions are at 5pm
They'll be about 30 minutes long and are a wonderful chance to join together in the moment for some guided contemplative space and to gather up the week's reflections. You'll have the chance to use the 'chat', which makes for a rich and moving sense of community engagement. Here's the link to my YouTube channel. It's worth subscribing so that you get a notification when I go live.
Avoiding technical hitches and glitches! A few practical tips.
Crucially: Sometimes group e-mails like this get blocked if your computer thinks it's spam. A good way to avoid this is to put my e-mail address into your contacts list - firstname.lastname@example.org. Please do that now.
If you don't receive your e-mail, check your junk-mail folder first, and if you can't find it there, let me know and I'll send it to you personally without delay.
Your e-mail provider will have a setting for 'safe senders' which you can put me on, too, so that it sees that I'm friendly and not sending you junk. Here is a really useful website that provides 'safe sender' instructions for most of the main e-mail platforms.
In Lent, we recall Jesus' 40 days in the desert. It's the pause between his baptism and the start of his public ministry. You can read Matthew's account here. Jesus fasted, prayed, was tempted and resisted. The actions of his life thus flowed powerfully from out of this space.
Thanks for being here again, this Lent. I hope you enjoy the series!