Last night at the Ash Wednesday service we closed in silence with a written benediction. I’ve had a few people request that benediction as a Lenten devotional, so today we give you, “Sending for Ash Wednesday” written by Ann Siddall in Lent to Easter Liturgies: Year C.
In the footsteps of centuries of pilgrims,
go now to embark on your Lenten journey.
Consider how you may simplify your days,
so that you may travel lightly.
Be alert to all that could side-track you:
notice that which beckons alluringly,
or with apparently greater urgency,
than the pilgrim journey Christ invites.
Do not try to cover
more than one good day’s journey at a time.
Know when to stop for food and sleep,
so that the journey will not be too great for you.
Walk humbly, knowing that the goal
is not recognition, achievement or reward,
but simply to have come to know Christ
and yourself more intimately.
Be on the lookout for other pilgrims,
caring for those who limp, or fall;
those who cannot see the way forward:
pilgrimage is richer in community.
Go now: place your hand
into the outstretched hand of Jesus Christ,
allow the words of the story to guide you,
and pray for purity of heart and mind. Amen.