Ash Wednesday on Home Worship

February 17th - 7:00 pm

"Take Home Ashes" are available ahead of time.

Please call the church office, or just stop by to pick up your "Take Home Ashes" before the Service. 

A WORD OF CAUTION: If you plan on making ashes at home, be careful-- Do NOT mix ashes with water as this may create a caustic paste. Just use a small amount of olive oil and mark the forehead or top of the hand with the sign of the cross.

Photo: Love involves sacrifice and repentance. A woman prays after having ashes placed on her forehead during an Ash Wednesday service. Image by Kathleen Barry, United Methodist Communications.

Before service, you will need...

In preparation for this Ash Wednesday Service... please remember to: 1. Choose a special plant pot, a bowl or container (with drainage holes in the bottom). 

2. Next, fill your chosen bowl or pot with dirt or soil out of your yard or garden, or from a nearby park or farm. Make sure you have enough soil to fill your bowl or pot. Keep this on hand for our Service. 

3. Lastly, get your little baggie of "Take Home Ashes" you should already have. (If you don't have a baggie of "Take Home Ashes" yet, you can stop by the church office to get one. Look for them taped to the glass by the office door. You'll only need one little baggie per family. Garden gloves are optional.

A WORD OF CAUTION: If you plan on making ashes at home, be careful-- Do NOT mix ashes with water as this may create a caustic paste. Just use a small amount of olive oil and mark the forehead or top of the hand with the sign of the cross.

Welcome to Ash Wednesday

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ: the early Christians observed with great devotion the days of our Lord's passion and resurrection, and it became the custom of the Church that before the Easter celebration there should be a forty–day season of spiritual preparation.

During this season converts to the faith were prepared for Holy Baptism. It was also a time when persons who had committed serious sins and had separated themselves from the community of faith were reconciled by penitence and forgiveness, and restored to participation in the life of the Church.

In this way the whole congregation was reminded of the mercy and forgiveness proclaimed in the gospel of Jesus Christ

and the need we all have to renew our faith. We are still reminded today...

“A Service of Worship for Ash Wednesday” Copyright © 1979, 1986 by Abingdon Press. Renewal Copyright © 1992 UMPH. “Invitation to the Observance of the Lenten Discipline,” “Thanksgiving over the Ashes,” and “Pardon” from The Book of Common Prayer (The Episcopal Church, 1979), 264-269. Public Domain.

Hymn: Here Is Love Vast As the Ocean


Ash Wednesday Message: "Love Is the Way"

Pastor Emily Denmark McGee

What is Love? 

Scripture: I Corinthians 13: 4-8a NRSV

4 Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant 5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6 it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. 7 It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 8 Love never ends.


Meditative Music: Be Thou My Vision


Ashes to Dust to Soil

Take the remaining ashes and the seeds and place them into your prepared container, pot or bowl of soil. Mix the ashes into the soil well, but plant the seed only about a 1/2" deep. Gently tamp down the soil. 

Place in a sunny window, or in a sunny area in your yard just outside your door. Ideally, place it in a place where you can pray or a place that is somehow sacred or central to your daily life. 

Then water the pot until slightly moist. In the coming days, check your container often, watering as needed only. This bowl of soil is to remain with you throughout Lent and into Holy Week. 

Let’s see what we can grow!

An Ash Wednesday Blessing

Our God, Who loves you with an everlasting love, has formed you from the dust of the earth and from the dust of death God will raise you up. Oh, what God can do with dust. 

Our God, Who loves you with an everlasting love, reaches out to recreate you anew by the redemptive power of the cross, creating in you a clean heart and within you a new spirit. So too, may God reclaim the good soil in your life from that which has been smudged by the dirt of shame, guilt, darkness and mourning. Oh, what God can do with dirt. 

And in that new soil, may you find good things to grow and may you find new hope in the ashes. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

"Lent isn’t about punishing ourselves. 
It’s about drawing closer to Christ and allowing Him to share
in our struggles." 
- Justin Welby, the archbishop of Canterbury