It begins in ashes . . .. it journeys through darkness . . .it ends with celebration
Lent is the period of time between Ash Wednesday and carries on for 40 days, not counting Sundays. Sundays are not counted since they are the weekly celebration of the resurrection.
Ash Wednesday — Remember you are dust and to dust you shall return.
In my faith tradition we begin Lent by hiding the allelujah and removing decorations from the sanctuary. We receive the ashes as a sign of our mortality, self-examination and repentance. We remember that it is only by his gracious gift that we are given everlasting life.
At home, my altar is covered with a gray cloth, I place a bowl in the center and each day as I do Vespers I place a paper of self-examination, repentance, or prayer for another into the bowl. I will burn these papers during the Great Vigil (Saturday night waiting for Easter Morning). I also like to use rocks and a smaller tea candle on my altar during this season.
I have seen people who make rough wooden crosses and literally nail their requests to the cross during Lent and then attach flowers to each nail on Easter morning. I like this idea, but prefer my quiet bowl, rocks, and candle.
Reading: At Home in the World (M Guenther), Karneval in Köln (German), The Beautiful Mystery (Gamache)
Listening: Castle in the Air
Watching: Fringe, The Lizzie Bennett Diaries