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Creating a Worshipful and Penitential Mood during Lent

While the purpose of Lent isn’t to make worshipers feel sad, it’s important that they understand why the church takes time each year to remember the season. Worshipers ideally recognize that Lent is a time for focusing on their need for a Savior so they can appreciate Jesus’ sacrifice on Good Friday and His resurrection on Easter. Working aspects of Lent into members’ worship, home life, and personal reflection can help them turn to the cross each day during Lent.

Hymns

The music your church uses during worship can have a profound effect on the tone of the service. A hymn’s key signature can determine whether the hymn feels joyful or forlorn. The tempo determines whether the hymn feels energetic or plodding. The text determines the theme to which worshipers associate the emotions the music creates.

Pay special attention to the music you use during Lenten worship services. Deliberately choose music to support the sermon’s theme. Then share the hymns with members throughout the week. Printing the texts in bulletin inserts for members to take home can help them remember the mood of this sacred season throughout all six weeks of it.

Devotions

The season of Lent helps us draw closer to the cross. But when there’s work and school to attend, tests to study for, sports games to go to, meals to prep, laundry to fold, dogs to walk, doctor’s appointments to show up for, sleep to get, and faith to make a priority, it can be easy to forget about Lent. People may need reminders outside of worship to turn them away from the troubles of their daily lives and back toward the cross.

Consider emailing or texting daily devotions to your members throughout Lent. By regularly directing people’s attention toward Jesus, you can help them create a habit of doing this on their own even after Lent. In this way, these small daily messages can provide a reminder that God is with us all the time, every day.

Personal Reflection

Lent is a time of repentance and recognizing our need for a Savior. We become more aware of our sin and remember God’s promise to forgive all of it. Encourage members to meet with the pastor for private Confession and Absolution if they feel burdened by a particular sin. During this rite, pastors demonstrate to people how God’s forgiveness is for them individually. This personalizes Jesus’ Passion because it helps people understand Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection as something God did for them.

As you guide your church’s members in their understanding of Lent, remember that God forgives your sins too. He sent Jesus to the cross to die for you and was raised to give you everlasting life. May God keep you firm in His promises as He uses you to spread His love this Lenten season.


Share our Lent and Easter playlist for worshipers to use during Lenten devotions.

Listen to Lent & Easter Playlist
Written by

Erica Tape

Erica is a writer and editor in St. Louis with grand plans to write award-winning literary novels and to visit all seven continents. She was previously a copywriter at CPH and now works in the advancement office at Concordia Seminary. She is also currently pursuing an MFA in creative writing at Lindenwood University.

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