Tuesday, March 4, 2008

The Look of Lent

Lisa is hosting this week's fair: The Loveliness of Sacred Spaces. Check it out!

Lent is long. Over the years we have incorporated some activities and many visual reminders to keep us aware and focused.Last year the children and I decorated wreaths in liturgical colors. The how and what and why will make another post, but here is the purple one we keep on the kitchen table all through Lent. I bought the gigantic unscented candle online. I like that it is solid purple, not a white candle dipped in color.

It isn't Lent here without our crown of thorns. Braided from salt dough (1/2 cup salt, 2 cups flour, water as needed) and filled with 250 toothpicks, it has a prominent place in the kitchen. The toothpicks represent our sins which are what Jesus suffered for. They are removed as good deeds, sacrifices, or works of mercy are performed. Hopefully emptied, the wreath is decorated with flowers to become an Easter crown and centerpiece, with a white candle in the middle.

There are sometimes questions about which good deeds are worthy of a toothpick, but for the most part, this is not a show-piece. We hardly ever see anyone else removing a thorn.
This is our prayer corner in the family room. The tea light is in a purple glass holder. We usually kneel and pray before the crucifix there. The Stations of the Cross book is new for us this year (We the similar rosary meditation book.), although we really haven't used it much yet.

Years ago a friend suggested covering our religious pictures and statues with purple cloth during Lent. We did that for a while, but I'd rather see them, so now I drape them with purple ribbon instead. I found a big roll (Costco!) with wire in the edges which makes the ribbon easier to shape. I save the big pieces from year to year (ironing lightly).
The ribbon was also handy for draping the grape vine wreath that hangs on the front door.
I laminated this print of Veronica's veil years ago, but it is more prominent this Lent. It was in the kitchen for weeks, but I think that over time we stopped "seeing" it. Now I've started hanging it on mirrors, moving it every few days. I think that will help keep the image fresh for us, and maybe give us each a moment of reflection.


Anne said...

The Favorite Parable Meme

I am tagging you for this meme. The rules are simple and straightforward:

1. You name your five favorite parables
2. You tag one blogger per parable.
3. Link it back to my blog.

Have fun with it!


decrease to increase said...

I love the wreaths! I do have one I made for my Son's First Communion that I usally put out in May to celebrate his anniversary.
That is a great Idea to do a purple ribbon over the Crucifx. You have some lovely Ideas! Thanks for sharing.

Alexandra said...