Clergy Notes — February 19, 2017

Valentine’s Day is finally behind us…phew! I hope you all survived it and enjoyed spending some time with your nearest and dearest, or had the pleasure of a good rant about the consumerism of Valentine’s Day, and refused to partake!

Looking ahead to next week, we will have our Annual Vestry meeting on February 26th after the High 10:30 am Mass, where new Wardens and other representatives for St. James’ will be elected. There is an elections board in the Chapel walkway if you would like to see the current nominations.

This is an important date in our church calendar, when we review our reports and look back on what we have done, and look to the future: what is to come?

It seems crazy to think that Ash Wednesday will follow the vestry meeting beginning on March 1, 2017. It is at this time year that people begin asking: what are you giving up for Lent? It might seem early to start considering this, but it is not.

We can easily dismiss Lent by simply picking something like chocolate or beer, and just giving it up, with a plan to gorge ourselves immediately before and after. If we can do it for 40 days, we can show God how strong we are, right?

Right! It does take strength to abstain from the things we love, but if that is all we are doing, we are missing what God wants to give us. What is God inviting you to change this Lent? In quiet times when you are with God, what stirs in your heart? What are the behaviours that you know you are being called to change? When you find yourself in a situation where you know you should turn to God, do you turn to something else instead? Food, drink, a distraction like television? We each have to answer this ourselves and then during Lent when we feel the pull towards the thing we abstain from, turn to God in prayer. God will lead the way. We are not alone.

Deacon Lucy