Lent is a key time for individuals and congregations to pray and reflect together. In recent years, the Diocese of Edinburgh has produced a Lent Course, and these remain vibrant resources to be used during Lent, Easter or any time. Please contact the Advisor for Christian Life if would would like hard copies of any of these 3 courses.
As with Advent-Candlemas, there are a whole range of resources available. Below are links to some of these for the period of Lent through to Pentecost, loosely grouped to aid your search (please click on the arrows to see more information). There are also some physical resources held in the Diocese Office: please scroll to the bottom of the page to find these. If you want any more information on anything shared here, do get in touch with our Advisor for Christian Life.
Please note that this page continues to be a work-in-progress, so if you have ideas you wish to share, then please get in touch! (Last updated 14th February).
Experimental Liturgies (SEC)
There a various liturgies currently authorised for experimental use, all of which can be found on the SEC website. For the period of Lent, there is a liturgy for Ash Wednesday and Collects for Ash Wednesday to Holy Saturday.
Daily Devotionals (online)
Here are some of the daily devotional offerings for Lent 2024:
- Diocese of Aberdeen and Orkney for all of Lent and Easter, are following ‘The Way of the Cross‘.
- Christian Aid’s Count Your Blessings series of daily prayerful actions.
- Ignatian Spirituality Centre, Glasgow, Through Lent with Pope Francis.
- Bible Society’s Shadow of the Cross daily emails.
- CAFOD’s online Lent Calendar, with daily emails.
- Methodist Church’s Unbounded Love daily emails.
- Biola University’s Center for Christianity, Culture, and the Arts’ Lent Project is a 53-day aesthetically guided meditation on Christ’s life, death, and resurrection.
Christian Aid have 6 weeks worth of resources for group study or worship entitled Act on Poverty. There is a new resource, sponsored by the World Council of Churches, entitled True Freedom 24, which focusses on modern slavery.
The Chaplain to Eco-Congregation Scotland continues to provide resources via video, and information about those related to Lent can be found here.
Other ways to engage the congregation
- Praying in Color sheets offer people of every age a way to engage creatively in prayer in day.
- The wide-ranging artistic resources on Art and Theology are always very engaging.
- Muddy Church offers some ways to interact indoors and out with Lenten themes, including a 100-page reflection book (can be downloaded free, or with a donation).
- BRF’s Parenting for Faith offers ideas for families to engage with Lent through in weekly themes.
Church of England Lent 2024
The Church of England’s 2024 Lent theme is ‘Watch and Pray‘. This draws on the wisdom of Black Spirituality, particularly the practice of “tarrying” (waiting) as a community to draw closer to Jesus and to each other. Combining exuberant singing, fervent prayer and quiet lament, such services typically take place at night and last somewhat longer than the “one hour” Jesus asked of those first followers.
This year’s resources have been inspired and informed by the 2024 Archbishop of Canterbury’s Lent book, Tarry Awhile: Wisdom from Black Spirituality for people of faith by Selina Stone (SPCK). The daily reflections booklet for adults (CHP) exploring the same themes has been written by Carlton Turner, and there is also a daily challenge booklet for children and families (CHP).
Experimental Liturgies (SEC)
There a various liturgies currently authorised for experimental use, all of which can be found on the SEC website. There are a few liturgies for Holy Week: Palm Sunday; Maundy Thursday; Good Friday; Easter Vigil; as well as Collects for Ash Wednesday to Holy Saturday.
The use of “Christian Seders” during Holy Week is strongly discouraged. Historically, the way Passover/Pesach was celebrated during the lifetime of Jesus is very different from the current Jewish practices. Jesus would not recognise a modern Seder meal. Theologically, replacing deeply symbolic Jewish practices with Christian meaning perpetuates replacement theology / supersessionism, which has been the basis for much anti-Judaism.
For more information, please see this 2023 document from the Council for Christians and Jews: “Why ‘Christian Seders’ are not a good idea: A brief explainer“.
Other services or components thereof.
Stations of the Cross can be used at any time during Lent and/or Holy Week. The traditional version includes non-Scriptural events: here are some examples from the Diocese of Aberdeen and Orkney; Episcopal Book of Occasional Services (p.53); the Church of Scotland ‘In time of War in Gaza‘; and Episcopal Church ‘For Global Justice and Reconciliation‘.
During the Maundy Thursday service, if washing of feet feels too much, try washing hands. The use of wet-wipes in a nursing home was particularly well received.