Lenten Explorations for 2019


The Way of Love

This website from the Episcopal Church offers a wide variety of resources to help you deepen in your practice in the Way of Love. Lent is a great time to make room for a new practice, book or activity. The church has compiled a wonderful resource for those wanting to keeping in their walk with Christ. If you haven’t checked it out, you can make that a Lenten commitment.

The Screwtape Letters
A Lenten Exploration of Evil with the CS Lewis Classic

During the rise and reign of fascism in Europe, CS Lewis wrote a series of essays about the nature of evil and the weakness of human nature.  Written in epistolary form, the essays are structured as a series of letters from a fictional senior bureaucratic demon, Screwtape, to his demon-in-training, Wormwood.  In them, Screwtape instructs Wormwood how best to tempt human beings away from living faithfully.  Though the letters are full of British wit, they open up some very serious theological and political themes. Despite their popularity when written, CS Lewis admitted that they were very difficult to write, and he would often comment how troubling it was, as a Christian apologist, to imagine having a demon’s ‘point of view.’  The letters were first published as a weekly series in a periodical, and in 1942 they were compiled into book form.  

Our Lenten series at St. James this year will be an exploration of evil using the Screwtape Letters as a jumping off point.  Participants will read one of Screwtape’s letters each day (excluding Sundays) beginning the day after Ash Wednesday, which is March 6 this year, through the day before Palm Sunday, April 13.  Each Saturday there will be a gathering with coffee at the rectory to discuss the letters of the week.  

This year, the Keene United Church of Christ on the square is joining us in our exploration of Screwtape. If Saturday morning doesn’t work for you, join one of the UCC home groups for your weekly discussions. If you choose to attend one of the five UCC Groups, please contact Julie White in their church office to sign up.

Please find your own copy of the Screwtape Letters in advance, but wait to read it chapter by chapter along with the group.  While library copies can certainly be found, Elsa recommends that if you can, purchase a copy that you can mark up and take notes in. And if you’d like a copy of the reading schedule, just contact Patrick in the office.

Saturdays at 9:00 a.m.
St. James Episcopal Church Rectory
40 School Street, Keene
Rev. Elsa Worth, Host and Leader
Mondays at 1:00 p.m.
Jennie VanderHooven, Host
56 Arch Street, Keene
Martine Imon, Leader
Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m.
United Church of Christ in Keene
Room 202 (2nd Floor)
Host and Leader: George Russell
Sundays at 11:30 a.m.
United Church of Christ in Keene
Church Parlor (2nd Floor)
Rev. Cindy Bagley, Host and Leader
Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m.
Dawn Reed, Host
19 Trowbridge Drive, Keene
Susan Gettum, Leader
Fridays at 1:00 p.m.
Roger and Nancy Hansen, Hosts
16 Southview Drive, Keene
Debbie Garland, Leader


Who Will Win the Golden Halo This Year?
Lent Madness 2019

This year marks the tenth anniversary of the wacky and educational “Lent Madness” program from Forward Movement Press.  It’s a fun way to learn about the saints of the church and to engage in a little faithful competition.  Each day,  two saints get paired up on the bracket for a head to head contest.  People vote for their favorite of the two online.  At the end of the day one saint is eliminated from the bracket.  Half of the Round of 32 will be whittled down to the Saintly 16, then the Elate 8, and finally the Faithful 4.  The final winner receives the Golden Halo! 

 Recent winners of the Golden Halo have included 2018 -Anna Alexander, 2017 -Florence Nightingale and 2016 - Dietrich Bonhoeffer.

It’s fun, it’s silly, and it’s a great way to show people outside the church that Episcopalians have a good sense of humor.  We’ll be posting the bracket in the JD Room this year and following the bracket on our Facebook page.  Go here to learn more or sign up for daily emails that will outline the saints of the day and remind you to cast your vote.