© Long Buckby URC 2019
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Long Buckby United Reformed Church

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Lent thoughts from Rev. Geoff Townsend Sadly, I think we are all becoming increasingly aware that society is becoming increasingly secular. This was born out when YouGov carried out a public opinion survey, which included the question, ”What do you most associate with Easter?” The most popular answer was chocolate Easter eggs with 76%. Second came Bank Holidays with 67%, followed by Hot Cross Buns with 62%. Jesus only came 4th with 55%, but at least he beat the Easter bunny who scored 40%. If only 55% could associate Easter with Jesus, it seems very likely that far fewer would have any understanding of Lent which this year begins on Ash Wednesday 6th March. I’m sure that many people would claim to know something about Shrove Tuesday although they’d be more likely to call it “Pancake Day.” Certainly in Olney, where I began my ministry, it is one of the highlights of the year, with the main street being filled with tourists to watch the annual pancake race, with it taken very seriously as they try to beat the time of their American rivals in Liberal, Kansas. It’s claimed that apart from during the World Wars, the race has been held every year since 1445. Through the history of the Church, the observance of Lent has changed, at varying times it was regarded as a time for penance, repentance of past sins, mortifying the flesh, almsgiving and self-denial, Fortunately, none of these are compulsory today. In the Early Church it was seen as a time of preparation for the catechumens, before their entry into the Church with baptism on Easter Sunday. Following the Council of Nicaea in 325, Lent became 40 days often of fasting as part of the preparation for Easter.
© Long Buckby URC 2019
News 1

Long Buckby United Reformed Church

Email the Webmaster
Lent thoughts from Rev. Geoff Townsend Sadly, I think we are all becoming increasingly aware that society is becoming increasingly secular. This was born out when YouGov carried out a public opinion survey, which included the question, ”What do you most associate with Easter?” The most popular answer was chocolate Easter eggs with 76%. Second came Bank Holidays with 67%, followed by Hot Cross Buns with 62%. Jesus only came 4th with 55%, but at least he beat the Easter bunny who scored 40%. If only 55% could associate Easter with Jesus, it seems very likely that far fewer would have any understanding of Lent which this year begins on Ash Wednesday 6th March. I’m sure that many people would claim to know something about Shrove Tuesday although they’d be more likely to call it “Pancake Day.” Certainly in Olney, where I began my ministry, it is one of the highlights of the year, with the main street being filled with tourists to watch the annual pancake race, with it taken very seriously as they try to beat the time of their American rivals in Liberal, Kansas. It’s claimed that apart from during the World Wars, the race has been held every year since 1445. Through the history of the Church, the observance of Lent has changed, at varying times it was regarded as a time for penance, repentance of past sins, mortifying the flesh, almsgiving and self-denial, Fortunately, none of these are compulsory today. In the Early Church it was seen as a time of preparation for the catechumens, before their entry into the Church with baptism on Easter Sunday. Following the Council of Nicaea in 325, Lent became 40 days often of fasting as part of the preparation for Easter.