In Mark 1:9-15, Jesus reveals the mission of God, but another school shooting tests our resolve to see it, or to listen to his words of hope, saying that the time is now, kin-dom is here!

A school shooting tests Ash Wednesday’s invitation to reconciliation
Lent 1B  |  Mark 1:9-15

Facing Repentance

I had a really good sermon on Tuesday. It was pretty funny…and serious. It was about the gospel reading and the prayer book. I weaved together Jesus’s call for repentance and its central place as a Lenten theme. And then showed where we find it in our liturgy. I felt really good about it…on Tuesday night.

It was Wednesday, after our noon service and I was coming back from campus a second time, having shared ashes and the call to observe a Holy Lent with so many people when I heard about a shooting in Parkland, Florida. Seventeen people were murdered.

And that night Rose showed me a picture.

It was a picture of a frightened mother with fresh ashes on her forehead.

I couldn’t look. I was so angry.

This is Ash Wednesday. And St. Valentine’s Day. Ashes and martyrs. Are you kidding me?


The full text and audio may be downloaded above or here.