Eight items necessary for flawless Lenten environment
Lent calls us to clear away the things that distract us so that we can focus on the intense, retreat-like atmosphere of the season. Here are eight items necessary to help you prepare a great Lenten environment.
- Clean and clutter-free pews, vestibules, sanctuaries, and reconciliation rooms.
- Water in all the fonts.
- A dignified Book of the Gospels.
- A dignified Book of the Elect and a place to highlight it.
- If possible, incense (the good stuff), fresh charcoal, and a beautiful thurible and stand.
- Fresh candles, especially for the fourth Sunday of Lent.
- A substantial cross (preferably the one to be venerated on Good Friday), especially for the final week of Lent (cf., Liturgical Music Today, 48).
- A moment of substantial communal silence and stillness before Mass.
And some things to use less of:
- dead, dried, or fake things
- oil lamps shaped to look like candles
- rocks in the font
- sand in the font
- banners with symbols or words on them
- vestments with symbols or words on them
- altar and ambo cloths with symbols or words on them