Christians begin Lenten season Wednesday

Published 9:12 pm Friday, February 24, 2017

Lent begins Wednesday, and many Christians will participate in an Ash Wednesday service signifying the start of the religious season, which lasts until Easter.
During this time, many will observe a period of fasting and repentance while also practicing self-denial and spiritual discipline.
In observance of this time of preparation before the celebrations of Easter, the Church of the Holy Trinity, Episcopal in Vicksburg and St. Alban’s Episcopal in Bovina will both offer Lenten series that will include a meal and musical programs.
“For a lot of people this has become a tradition, something they look forward to,” Beth Palmer, the rector of Holy Trinity said about their annual Lenten program.
For more than 20 years, the church has been offering a gumbo lunch and musical performances on Fridays leading up to Easter.
“Every Friday we get a brief concert and share some food with friends,” Palmer said of the five-week program.
She said that the Lenten series is also a time visitors can come and participate at Holy Trinity.
“This is an opportunity to welcome our neighbors into our midst and show fellowship. And we find a lot of people will hang out after the lunch to talk and visit with friends,” Palmer said.
The Lenten series is also an opportunity to invite someone to participate at Holy Trinity who is looking for a church home.
Sometimes when we talk about evangelism it is hard for some to say ‘do you want to come with me to church on Sunday,’ ” Palmer said, but inviting someone to a half hour lunch and a musical program can be easier.
The Lenten Art Programs at St. Alban’s are held on Wednesday nights and in addition to the musical programs a soup dinner is served.
Billie Abraham, the rector at the church compared a Lenten program to the sacrament of the Eucharist.
“The heart of the Episcopal Church is our communal worship that takes place in the Celebration of the Eucharist.  The Eucharist is an expression of art — it fills our senses,” Abraham said.
“So because the arts are gifted to us by our Creator — because our Creator called to us be co-creators — because the arts speak a unique language that opens us to the presence of God,” Abraham said, it seems fitting to offer a series of art programs for Lent.
For those interested in participating in the Lenten programs offered by the churches the schedules are:
Holy Trinity’s Lenten Fine Arts Series
March 10 — Mississippi Symphony Orchestra Brass Quintet; Richard Hudson, conductor
March 17 — Tara; Celtic trio, “Echoes of Ireland”
March 24 — Alcorn University Men’s Choir; Charles Wesley, conductor
March 31 —One Voice; women’s a cappella group from Bovina Baptist Church
April 7 — Vicksburg High School Madrigal singers; Angela Chapin, conductor
The noontime events will include a musical program followed by a gumbo lunch. The concerts are free and the lunch is $10. For more information, call 601-636-0542.
St. Alban’s Episcopal Lenten Arts Programs
March 8 — Patrick Smith & Band, Blues, soul, jazz and gospel music
March 15 — John Paul; harpsichordist, J. S. Bach concert
March 22 — Full Circle; Nicholas Blake, Julia Blake and Joanne Ryan, bluegrass and spirituals
March 29 — Mandy Spivak; soprano, performing songs celebrating “Mary the Mother of Jesus”
April 5 — Vicksburg High School Madrigal singers; Angela Chapin, conductor
The evening events begin at 6 p.m. with Holy Eucharist and a Healing Service.
The free soup dinner will offered at 6:30 p.m. followed by the Lenten Arts Program. For more information, call 601-636-6687.

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About Terri Cowart Frazier

Terri Frazier was born in Cleveland. Shortly afterward, the family moved to Vicksburg. She is a part-time reporter at The Vicksburg Post and is the editor of the Vicksburg Living Magazine, which has been awarded First Place by the Mississippi Press Association. She has also been the recipient of a First Place award in the MPA’s Better Newspaper Contest’s editorial division for the “Best Feature Story.”

Terri graduated from Warren Central High School and Mississippi State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations.

Prior to coming to work at The Post a little more than 10 years ago, she did some freelancing at the Jackson Free Press. But for most of her life, she enjoyed being a full-time stay at home mom.

Terri is a member of the Crawford Street United Methodist Church. She is a lifetime member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary and is a past member of the Sampler Antique Club and Town and Country Garden Club. She is married to Dr. Walter Frazier.

“From staying informed with local governmental issues to hearing the stories of its people, a hometown newspaper is vital to a community. I have felt privileged to be part of a dedicated team at The Post throughout my tenure and hope that with theirs and with local support, I will be able to continue to grow and hone in on my skills as I help share the stories in Vicksburg. When asked what I like most about my job, my answer is always ‘the people.’

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