Global Ministries

The United Methodist Church

Connecting the Church in Mission

Lent 2013

Lent and Easter

A gathering of dates, devotionals, and other resources centered on the Lenten season. Lent, which begins on Ash Wednesday, is a period of 40 days, not including Sundays, that precede Easter.

From the Methodist Liaison Office in Jerusalem

The Methodist Liaison office in Jerusalem. shares reflections written by United Methodists serving in Palestine and Israel for the weeks of Lent and every day of Holy Week.

Part I. Ash Wednesday through Fifth Sunday in Lent. (pdf)

Part II. Holy Week Reflections (pdf)

Worshiping Together: Praying with the World through Banners

By Rev. Debra R. Tyree*

Ideas for Lent and world prayer using beautiful fabric.
Banners created by members of Grace United Methodist Church, Atlanta, Ga., from fabrics collected from the people of the North Georgia Annual Conference. Pictures of banners by Scott Parrish from the “Welcome and Celebration of Mission” worship service sponsored by the North Georgia and South Georgia Annual Conferences on Jan. 11, 2015. Used by permission.

As we move into the season of Lent, the rich colors of purple are brought into our worship spaces mixed with the more muted and neutral tones of gray. We enter into a season of intentional prayer and penitence. Many churches “bury” or refrain from saying or singing the word “alleluia.” Worship services become more contemplative as we hear the stories of Jesus’ ministry and sacrifice here on earth. And yet, Sundays in Lent are also seen and celebrated through the lens of the coming season of Easter. We always keep a glimpse of the resurrection ahead of us!

How can you embody all of those concepts visually in worship?

Consider creating banners made from fabrics from the world to place around your worship space during Lent. The colors and textures of the fabrics will be a wonderful addition to your worship space. You can create the banners quickly with just a few supplies!

Global Banners


  • Global fabrics of any kind. Ask your congregation to bring to you any fabrics they have from the world. Remind them to look for table linens, as well as scarves, in addition to pieces of cloth. Remember to share that you will not be cutting the fabrics.
  • Banner poles. Search around your building for banners stands and holders. You can make hanging banners using wooden dowels or pieces of PVC (polyvinyl chloride) pipe as the horizontal poles and rope, chain, or strong ribbon as the hangers. Consider painting the dowels or PVC a dark color. Wooden closet rod poles can be used as the vertical pole. A few pieces of wood block can be nailed together and attached to the closet rod to create freestanding banner stands. Ask a carpenter or person who is good at basic home repair to create them for you.
  • Clear plastic thread and needles, scissors, straight pins, safety pins, diaper pins, and any ribbon remnants you have.

How to:

  • Prepare the banner poles by cutting the dowel/PVC pipe to your preferred length and paint them. You could also stain the wooden dowels, if preferred.
  • Cut the rope/chain/ribbon to your preferred length. You can tie the rope/chain/ribbon to the ends of the poles now or wait until you have secured the fabric to the pole. If you are using PVC you can loop the rope/chain/ribbon through the pipe. You may want to add eye hooks to the ends of the wooden dowels as a tool to connect the rope/chain/ribbon to the dowel.
  • Spread the collected fabrics on tables or the floor and begin to lay them next to each other with an eye toward color, texture, fabric weight, and country or culture of origin.
  • Loop the fabrics over the pole and secure them by lightly sewing them into place using long stitches under the dowel/PVC poles. You may be able to use the straight pins, safety pins, or diaper pins to do this. Cover the pins by tying or hanging the ribbon remnants through them. Be creative – there is no wrong way to do this!
  • You can also collect several lightweight fabrics, such as scarves and thin fabrics, and tie many of them on the horizontal pole. Intersperse ribbon remnants and you will create a wonderful processional banner that will move as you bring it into the worship space!

Read more.

Related Articles

Ideas for Lent and world prayer using beautiful fabric.
Praying with the World through Banners
Ideas for Lent and world prayer using beautiful fabric.
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One Great Hour of Sharing: 40 Days of Meditations (UMCOR 75th Special Edition)

UMCOR 75th edition 40 Lenten

This Lenten season, try the One Great Hour of Sharing devotional ebook, offering United Methodists and friends 40 days of meditations about the needs of others around the world. (pdf version)

Calendar of Dates for Lent and Easter 2016

Ash Wednesday - February 10, 2016

First Sunday in Lent - February 14, 2016

Second Sunday in Lent - February 21, 2016

Third Sunday in Lent - February 28, 2016

Fourth Sunday in Lent - March 6, 2016

Fifth Sunday in Lent- March 13, 2016

Liturgy of the Palms - March 20, 2016
Sixth Sunday in Lent

Liturgy of the Passion - March 20, 2016
Sixth Sunday in Lent

Easter Sunday - March 27, 2016

HOPE: Reflections on Addiction

Download this Lenten bible study from SPSARV (29-page pdf)

Hope Reflections on Addiction, from SPSARV, with purple flower

Music Resources

"Lord, I Want to be a Christian"
(solo for medium voice)

A beautiful solo on Ash Wednesday or any Sunday in Lent, use this as a response or call to prayer. If liturgical dancers are a part of your church ministry, ask the dance team to interpret the sing. From Steal Away to Jesus.

"Saw Ye My Savior"
(duet for sop./bar. or bass)

This arrangement can be sung with the piano accompaniment or consider arranging the accompaniment for a small acoustic ensemble of guitar, keyboard, and hand drum as performed on the CD. Use during Holy Week, especially on Good Friday. From Steal Away to Jesus.