Wilderness Church with St. Paul's Greenville for Lent 2024
Sunday, February 18, 2024, 4:00 PM
“And the Spirit steered him into the wilderness.” -Mark 1:12
Every year at the beginning of Lent, the Spirit of Jesus’s baptism sends him into the wilderness. The wilderness can certainly be a dangerous place, as is evidenced by the temptations Jesus faces immediately thereafter. Still, I wonder if the Spirit sent him there only to be tempted, as Matthew’s gospel seems to insist (see Matthew 4:1). Mark’s gospel is a bit more vague on the Spirit’s intentions. After all, the wilderness isn’t the only place where temptations lurk, as most of us can attest. It could be that the Spirit was prodding Jesus to find something beyond those temptations, and so sent him to somewhere beyond his usual borders in search of that ‘something’. I can’t help but wonder if that ‘something’ wasn’t clarity about who and whose he was. And I can’t help but further wonder if more of us couldn’t use a season to find that.I don’t think that the wilderness makes it easier for us to find God, but I do believe it can make it easier to see that God has not lost us.
This Lent St. Paul's, Greenville is offering a new opportunity to wander in the wilderness with Jesus. Beginning on Sunday, February 18, we’ll gather at River Park North at 4 p.m. for Wilderness Church. This will be a moving service (literally) that involves a journey down a path accompanied by prayers, scripture, and communion.This isn’t about an arduous hike or a grand outdoor worship experience; it’s about the simple act of gathering in a natural setting, embracing the calm of the evening, and connecting our prayers to our steps in surroundings that can’t help but worship God with us.We will begin each Sunday evening in the picnic pavilion near the main parking lot at River Park North.The service will last around 45 minutes and is subject to weather conditions. As a rule of thumb, if it’s raining or below 32º, we’ll try again next week!
Join St. Paul's, Greenville at Wilderness Church for a season of reflection and connection, a time to see the presence of God in the natural world and in one another. Somewhere in our wandering, we may just find the clarity and community we seek, embracing God’s wilderness as a path to discovery. See St. Paul's website to learn more.