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Pastor's Message - February 2024

~Our Second Annual Lentflix!~

“And he was in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan,

and he was with the wild beasts, and the angels

~Mark 1:13


Dear Members and Friends,

I wish Easter were a little more like Christmas. Let me explain. I’m glad Easter is not as commercialized as Christmas. I’m also glad that Easter does not swallow the two months leading up to it---(unless that’s almost exactly what Lent does…) I just wish Easter could be stable like Christmas, which always falls on December 25. Easter can fall anywhere between March 22 and April 25, always on the first Sunday after the full moon of the spring equinox. I’m not sure who thought that would be a good idea. But it means that we get an early one this year. I prefer a late Easter for two reasons: It’s fun when the daffodils and dewdrops participate in announcing the message of rebirth. Also, as a pastor, I like a little time to recover my creativity between Christmas and Lent.

This year Lent begins on Valentine’s Day, February 14 (another stable holiday), with a “Service of Ashes” at 7:00 p.m. Ponder the spiritual disciplines that you might want to practice in the days leading up to Easter. I have a suggestion: Take part in OUR SECOND ANNUAL LENTFLIX every Wednesday evening between Ash Wednesday and Holy Week. Lentflix is a potluck and movie discussion group. We all watch a selected movie at home, then bring a simple dish to share and come together for a guided discussion of moral or spiritual themes in the film. These are not religious movies. Last year’s selections included “Places in the Heart,” “As Good as It Gets,” “Babette’s Feast,” “The Whale” and my personal favorite, “A Hidden Life.” (Google that last one; it’s long, but it might be my favorite movie of all time.) That’s just it though, last year I picked all the movies. This year, we want YOU to pick them.

So here’s how Lentflix is going to happen this year: We’ll kick things off with a “watch party” for the film “Groundhog Day,” a kid-friendly classic, set in Pennsylvania, which raises some surprising theological questions! The watch party will be on Sunday, February 18, at 5:00 p.m. Dinner is free that night, no potluck. Come back the following Wednesday with a simple dish to share and take part in a guided discussion of the film. Each Wednesday, the following week’s movie will be announced, along with streaming options for watching at home. We will come together again for a potluck dinner and discussion on February 28 and March 6, 13 and 20. Children are welcome, even if some of the films and discussions might go a little over their heads.

Now…we need movie suggestions. Is there a film that’s meaningful to you? Do you know of a good flick that raises important questions about life, love, death, guilt, redemption, friendship, forgiveness, or any consequential topic? Again, we’re not looking for religious movies, just good ones. Drama, romance, Westerns, adventure, comedy, classics, you name it! We only have room for four, so get your suggestion to me ASAP!

Happy Lenten season to you. I hope you’ll make this a special time to draw near to God, and I hope you’ll do that in part by taking part in our Lentflix events. It’s a joy to be making this journey alongside you.

Christ’s Peace,


PS: My potluck commitment to you is to bring forgotten foods of the 1970s…



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