Dear St. Mark’s Family,

What does the season of Lent mean for you?  For very many people Lent, is simply something that was borrowed, (and may or may not be returned 😉  But for Christians, Lent can be a wonderful season of spiritual life and growth which begins on Ash Wednesday and finishes on Palm Sunday.  During this season we are seeking God and asking God to prepare us for both the passion of Jesus on the cross and for our great celebration on Resurrection Sunday.

There is a wonderful Lenten season ahead of us at St. Marks with numerous opportunities for prayer, retreat, study and the challenge to look outward.

First of all, we have our Thursday Lenten Lunches which are hosted this year by Mt. Olive Lutheran from noon to 1PM.

St. Marks is hosting the World Day of Prayer on Friday March 6th.

Rev. Denise is planning a Day Retreat on Prayer at St. Matthews in Abbotsford on March 7th.

We are very privileged to welcome Rev. Canon Roger Simpson for the weekend of March 14 and 15.  Roger is the Arch-Bishop of York’s appointed Evangelist to Northern England.  He will be with us at St. Marks on the weekend of Saturday 14 and 15. for a conference titled,  In Footsteps of Giants, Walking the Way of Mission with Moses – Availability; Jesus – Taking Opportunities; Paul – Prayer; Timothy – Persistence. Saturday begins at 9:30AM with muffins and coffee and will include a light lunch finishing the day at 3:30PM.  Registration for this day is only $15! You can register for this conference by email at, or call Catherine Featherstone at (604) 897-9597

I am particularly looking forward to our Lenten Course on Spiritual Living called, “Finding your Spiritual Balance,” which will run every Thursday evening in March and be co-taught by four people with training and experience in their various disciplines.

March 5 on Lectio Divina; The Way of Praying the Scriptures, led by Janet Scott.
March 12 on An Introduction to Benedictine Spirituality led by the Rev. Sue Foley
March 19 on Spiritual Direction led by Rev. Denise
March 26 on Spiritual Disciplines like Solitude and Silence led by Rev. Craig

Each evening begins in the Family room from 7:30 to 9PM. Registration is free, but please RSVP at or call Catherine at (604) 897-9597.

In addition, on Thursday evening March 17th my wife and I are presenting part two of our Sabbatical Journey where we were Following the Missionary Journeys of the Apostle Paul.  This ladies only evening begins at 7PM, hosted by the Evening Guild in the church Hall.

It all culminates in the Passion Week services:
Holy Wednesday, April 1st, Rev. Denise will be canting Compline along with the choir at 7:30PM
Maundy Thursday April 2nd will be a Candle-light Family Meal with the Eucharist (not a Seder) in the church Hall.
Good Friday April 3rd begins at 9AM with the procession of the cross, the 10:30AM service followed by the Stations of the Cross.  In the afternoon there is a Stations of the Cross for children.
Holy Saturday April 4th will take place in our newly renovated outdoor chapel.  At this brief ecumenical service we will re-dedicate our chapel, light the Easter Fire and the Paschal candle!  Dress for the weather for it will happen rain or shine.
Finally, On Resurrection Sunday April 5th we will rejoice celebrate together in resurrection of our Lord!

Let me finish this letter with the words of invitation that are spoken on Ash Wednesday, at the beginning of Lent;

“I invite you, therefore, in the name of the Lord, to observe a holy Lent by self-examination, penitence, prayer, fasting and almsgiving, and by reading and meditation on the word of God.” 

God bless you and I’ll see you on Sunday!

Rev. Craig Tanksley