MCC New Orleans Lent 2023
Weekly Sunday Worship - 10am (fellowship hall)
Ash Wednesday - 7pm (sanctuary)
Palm Sunday - 10am (fellowship hall)
Holy Thursday - 7pm (fellowship hall)
Good Friday - 7pm
Easter Sunday - 10am (fellowship hall)
Join us virtually each Friday night at 7pm for Taize (Vimeo)
Dear Saints of God,
During this Lenten Season our scriptures taken from the Revised Common Lectionary Year A, offers us many stories of Jesus encountering people who are seeking: Nicodemus comes to him in the veil of night, he approaches a Samaritan woman at a well, and he heals a man born without sight. In these stories, each person is seeking a new beginning, a different life, a deeper faith. What unfolds is an exchange filled with questions and exploration. Often, an unveiling occurs—assumptions are disrupted, a new perspective is revealed, and mystery grows.
Our Lenten series is founded on questions. Many of our weekly questions feel restorative (“Can these bones live?”). Some feel like a charge or challenge (“Who will you listen to?”). Some questions are hopeful and curious (“How do we begin again?”). Questions such as these won't necessarily lead to answers, but they can help us find clarity and a new perspective. Ultimately, we pray they lead to a new beginning, a restoration, and a wider grace.
Like the characters in our Lenten scriptures, we are also seeking many things: clarity, connection, wonder, justice, balance. We are seeking our calling, the sacred, and how to live as a disciple.
Throughout the turbulence of the past few years, many of us are asking big questions about our lives and our faith. If you are returning to church, you are probably returning with more questions and a critical lens. We hope this series will help us unpack some of those big questions in ways that are honest and faithful. Throughout this season, we hope you will continually ask yourself: what am I seeking? What is God seeking?
This Lent, we at MCC of New Orleans invite you to engage in the spiritual practice of seeking. We encourage you to stay curious, open, and nimble. We hope you will soften your assumptions and expand your perspectives. We pray that these questions will create a safe space to explore—to be drawn more deeply into the fullness of life, into the heart of God.
As part of our Lenten theme we are providing a Devotional Booklet to aid your journey of seeking at home. Beginning with Ash Wednesday, this weekly devotional follows the Revised Common Lectionary Year A through Easter Sunday. Each week offers: commentary, poetry, visual art, written reflections, hymns and reflection prompts for you to use at your leisure. As a gift to those on our mailing list, we will be sending out a copy of the Devotional Booklet. If you would like a copy please email Pastor Lonnie at email@example.com.
So often faith is portrayed as something you have or you don’t. You are strong in your faith, or you are knee-deep in doubt. It’s one or the other. This black and white thinking fits with our society's obsession with choosing sides. However, it doesn’t fit with my experience of faith. For me, faith has always been an experience of seeking—seeking God in the world, seeking the good, seeking a deeper truth. I seek my way through prayer. I seek my way into scripture. I am forever patching together memories, feelings, questions, and experiences, all in an effort to see God more clearly. When studying and reflecting on the scriptures for this season of Lent, I saw that same hungry seeking in the text. Over and over, people ask questions. Jesus asks questions. The crowds ask questions. Everyone seems to be looking for something deeper, and it is that honest curiosity that allows them to run into the Divine. This Lent, I long for that same experience for all of us. So may we be seekers. May we ask questions. May we look for God under every rock and stone. And in the seeking, may we find that which we are searching for.
In God’s grace,
about the logo & branding
An eye feels like a recognizable and even predictable image for the general theme of Seeking, however, there is nothing all that simple or straightforward about this Lenten theme. As I studied the texts, I found there was repetition in visual imagery that held the texts together. As I sketched, the logo became layered with imagery that formed more shapes and meaning, sometimes obscuring and revealing more as I went. It was a balance of maintaining the legibility and clarity that is necessary in a logo, while connecting to a theme that is about being unable to find understanding or even tangibility. I wanted the logo at first glance to be somewhat obvious, but at closer inspection, I wanted it to expand, confuse, and surprise. The viewing of the logo itself is a process of seeking meaning.
— Rev. Lauren Wright Pittman, designer of the theme logo and branding
View the seeking: honest questions for a deeper faith devotional booklet here.