In 2021, Lent begins with Ash Wednesday on February 17th. We are planning to make this contemplative season as accessible and safe as possible during the pandemic, while still partnering with our fellow Bellingham Presbyterian Churches (Cordata and St. James), and our friends at Spring Church Bellingham – plus welcoming all! Click the images below to join our Lenten gatherings. Text links are at the bottom of this page if you prefer that format.
Information below is the same as the images above for Lenten worship meetings, but spelled out in words instead of clickable images:
Ash Wednesday: Worship service live via Zoom, Feb. 17, 2021 at 7:00pm – join at https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89529179842?pwd=NlRDa2lnSHJjM0IvQ1NWLzNHMFp3QT09
Stations of the Cross at FPC: Visit FPC in person on Sunday afternoons in Lent to meditate on Scott Erickson’s Stations of the Cross art installation in the sanctuary. Pre-registration is required for these visits – sign up for a time here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/20f0544aaa828a1f49-lent
Psalms and Songs: Wednesdays during Lent, 7:00pm – worship time via Zoom, hosted by Cordata Presbyterian Church. Join the weekly Zoom service at: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85752425365?pwd=TlM1c256TzNtMjJLNVAwZzZmMit2QT09
Weekly Examen: Wednesdays during Lent, 7:00pm – Examen prayer and quiet reflection time via Zoom, hosted by St. James Presbyterian Church. Join the weekly Zoom service at: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/88335387843 or view it (live-streamed or recording posted) at http://www.saintjamespres.org/live
Palm Sunday: Join our live worship service, March 28 at 10:00am via Zoom – https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83342213164?pwd=T0xEdlVsdmJRbStrZk1yN0JxVHQ5Zz09
Maundy Thursday: Join our Zoom service, hosted by Cordata Presbyterian Church, at 7:00pm Thursday April 1, at https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81556641377?pwd=S0ZiTWlyeEV1ZzBlNzYyaE05WVNydz09
Tenebrae: Join our service via Zoom on Good Friday, April 2, 7:00pm at https://us02web.zoom.us/j/89893420269?pwd=YS9WVTVZV3liemdJUWFVMUt1MlY3QT09 If you prefer to watch the Tenebrae service via YouTube live stream and not participate via Zoom, you can watch the livestream at this link: https://youtu.be/Y8CPDShnSB8
Rocky Soil Picture Show: We’re nicknaming this Saturday evening creative event the “Rocky Soil Picture Show” – come along on Zoom April 3 from 6:30pm for a creative dramatic reading of the entire gospel of Mark (expected to take two or more hours). Register here in advance for an assigned reading part: tinyurl.com/rockysoil21 and then join via Zoom for the 6:30pm event at https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84109759622?pwd=UmQ5NXhGWjJNUzNkOTV1cW9zZkhyZz09
Easter Sunday: Worship service will be via YouTube (find it here on our website as usual). You are also invited to physically stop by our church building that morning (between 9-11am). Join Pastor Doug and Pastor Kerrie outside the front doors of the church (main Garden Street entrance) on Easter Sunday to bring out our Alleluias by putting flowers on a cross! Bring your own or use some of ours. We’d love to proclaim “He is Risen” with you and your family! Masks and physical distancing required.
What is the Rocky Soil Picture Show?
It is a group of people coming together on Zoom to hear the Gospel of Mark—yes, the whole thing!—read in its entirety. But we’ll be doing more than reading; we’ll be doing some fun audience participation as well. Before the reading begins, there will be a brief orientation on how you can participate in the story.
Who will be reading it?
Most of it will be read by the Veiths; Rob will be reading all of Jesus’ words and Eshinee will be acting as narrator, basically reading everything that isn’t something someone said. But anything else that was said by someone in particular – that will be read by volunteers. We have a lot of volunteers to read so far, but we could use a lot more too and would love to have you join the fun!
Eshinee has turned the book of Mark into a script, with the reading parts clearly marked. So if you sign up to be a reader — which you can do up until end-of-day Sunday March 28 — she’ll assign you a part to read, the script, and where to find your part in the script. Want to read a little, just a verse or two? Want to read a lot? There are reading parts of a variety of lengths available. Just indicate on the form what you’re up for and she’ll make it happen!
How will this work?
Eshinee has turned the book of Mark into a script, with a variety of reading parts for those who signed up by March 28 to be a reader. But you don’t have to be a reader to attend and participate! This is meant to be a low-impact and fun activity for people of all ages and (hopefully) attention spans. You can even just show up and watch the fun on Saturday night.
We will all be responding to different events and verbal cues in the narrative in specific ways. Some of you may remember the “punchbuggy” or “slugbug” game, where you punch someone on the shoulder if you see a Volkswagon Beetle and say, “Punchbuggy, no punch backs!” Well, don’t worry, we won’t be punching anyone during the reading. But we will be listening for specific cues that we can respond to automatically and reflexively, punchbuggy style. (A list of cues will be provided.)
With that in mind, here are some props you should bring:
- an empty toilet paper or paper towel roll (or some other makeshift megaphone)
- a picture (a drawing, coloring, painting, or photo) of a tree
- something to drink
We are used to engaging with the Bible in traditional ways and contexts, particularly in the context of corporate worship. We are comfortable with being reverential, serious, and even analytical. But there is a history of engaging with Scripture physically and playfully that isn’t often a part of how we do things today. Within the Jewish tradition, the celebration of Purim involves not only reading the entire book of Esther but reacting to parts of it with noise-makers and foot-stomping. In medieval times, when literacy levels among the general public were still low, bible events were acted out on special religious occasions by priests with elaborate sets and costumes.
The upcoming Mark reading is intended to be a time for us to allow ourselves to respond openly and verbally to the text as it is read. We will hear the voices of the characters in this narrative as actual, distinct voices. And they will not be voices that are unknown to us; they will be our own voices as we place ourselves within the story.
In many traditions, the Saturday night between Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday is observed as time of waiting, often known as the Easter Vigil. It can be a time to reflect on the whole of God’s story. It often involves gathering together in anticipation of the morning to come. In reading through Mark’s account, we are choosing to remember and experience Jesus’ life and death through the single lens of just one of the gospel records. By reading it together, with many voices, we are refracting the light of his vision through our own lenses as we reveal our own understanding of the story through our telling of it.