What's Going on at St. Mark's?
Fundraising with Kroger's New Community Rewards Program
Do you shop at Kroger? Now when you swipe your Kroger Plus card a % of your purchase can be donated to St. Mark's. Just go to kroger.com, click on “Community” then “Community Rewards”. Log in to your account or create one if you haven't already. Click “Enroll Now” and then search for St. Mark's or code 10638. Click the circle next to St. Mark's and click “Enroll”. Our Navigators scouting group is registered as well - their code is 80899. Each quarter Kroger mails out donations based on sales from where enrolled Kroger Plus cards were swiped. This new program replaces the old Kroger gift card program. Please contact Lara Dreyer at stmarkstreas@att.net if you need information or assistance. - See more at: http://stmarksweb.org/custompage1.php#sthash.kQBmAnPx.dpuf

The Season of Lent
By Dennis Bratcher
Lenten crucifix draped in purple stole and rowned with thornsOriginating in the fourth century of the church, the season of Lent spans 40 weekdays beginning on Ash Wednesday and climaxing during Holy Week with Holy Thursday (Maundy Thursday), Good Friday, and concluding Saturday before Easter. Originally, Lent was the time of preparation for those who were to be baptized, a time of study and prayer before their baptism at the Easter Vigil. But since these new members were to be received into a living community of Faith, the entire community was called to preparation. Also, this was the time when those who had been separated from the Church would prepare to rejoin the community.

Today, Lent is marked by a time of prayer and preparation to celebrate Easter. Since Sundays celebrate the resurrection of Jesus, the six Sundays that occur during Lent are not counted as part of the 40 days of Lent, and are referred to as the Sundays in Lent. The number 40 is connected with many biblical events like the Hebrews' 40 years in the wilderness after the exodus, and Jesus' 40 days in the wilderness after his baptism. These examples suggest a time of preparation. The wilderness wandering prepared the Hebrews to enter the promised land of Canaan. Jesus' time in the wilderness prepared him for a ministry as Messiah. Lent, then, was one of the Church's two seasons of preparation for baptism. Christians today use this period of time for self-examination, and repentance.

Lent has traditionally been marked by penitential prayer, fasting, and alms-giving. Some churches today still observe a rigid schedule of fasting on certain days during Lent, especially the giving up of meat, alcohol, sweets, and other types of food. Other traditions do not place as great an emphasis on fasting, but focus on charitable deeds, especially helping those in physical need with food and clothing, or simply the giving of money to charities. Most Christian churches that observe Lent at all focus on it as a time of prayer, especially penance, repenting for failures and sin as a way to focus on the need for God’s grace. It is really a preparation to celebrate God’s marvelous redemption at Easter, and the resurrected life that we live, and hope for, as Christians.

The color used in the sanctuary for most of Lent is purple, red violet, or dark violet. These colors symbolize both the pain and suffering leading up to the crucifixion of Jesus as well as the suffering of humanity and the world under sin.  But purple is also the color of royalty, and so anticipates through the suffering and death of Jesus the coming resurrection and hope of newness that will be celebrated in the Resurrection on Easter Sunday.

The Church has traditionally marked Lent by various practices of self-denial such as not placing flowers on the altar, singing music with a penitential rather than cheerful tone, and ceasing the use of “Alleluia!” in the liturgy.

Lent Madness 2012

It's Lent Madness!

We have ordered the Lent Madness books and scorecards.  Soon we'll all be plotting out our brackets.  Good luck, and may the best saint win! http://www.lentmadness.org

Pancake Supper - Shrove Tuesday, February 9
We are looking for volunteers to assist Vivian Nowaczewski organizing and carrying off the Pancake Supper, and many more to come and eat. The community will also be invited. There will be a minimal cost to cover expenses. Please use the sign-up sheet in the narthex to volunteer.

Our Diocesan Profile Has Been Published!

With the approval of our Diocesan Standing Committee, our Search Committee has just published our diocesan profile, describing our Diocese to potential candidates, and outlining the gifts, qualities, skills, and experiences we are looking for in our next Bishop. We formed this profile after many hours of prayer, deliberation, and faithful listening to the very helpful feedback you shared in both our diocesan survey and in the Holy Conversations last fall.

On January 10, we will begin to accept nominations for potential candidates, and our nominations will close on February 15, 2016. Know of a potential candidate? Nominate them yourself online by following the links in our profile! Questions? Comments? Please be in touch with us at info@hoosierbishopxi.org.

Yours in Christ,
The Search Committee for the Eleventh Bishop of Indianapolis

Adult Formation Blog
Join us in online conversation on our adult formation blog called The Lion's Share. The discussions are lively, starting with the series on spiritual gifts and ending with the examination of Paul's letter to Philemon. https://thelionssharesite.wordpress.com/

Abby Van Demark Memorial Library
  • South of Broad by Pat Conroy
  • If God is Love by Phillip Gulley and James Mulholland
  • Cities of Gold by Douglas Preston
  • Piercing the Darkness by Frank Peretti
Did you receive a new book for Christmas?  Are you through reading it?  We would be happy to receive it for the library.  Place it in the basket for Returned Books.

Contact Debbie Merrick for more information about the library.

The Lion's Den Menus

February 3: Chicken and Homemade Noodles, Mixed Vegetables, Bread, Salad and Dessert.
February 10: Meatloaf, Mashed Potatoes, Mixed Vegetables, Salad and Dessert
February 17: Chicken and Dumpling Soup, Fruit Cup, Crustini, Salad, and Dessert
February 24: TBD, Bread, Salad and Dessert

Happy Birthday To:

  • Paula Schmidt (February 1)
  • Melissa Van Demark (February 2)
  • Katie Rockabrand (February 6)
  • Emery Kelley (February 7)
  • Joel Monbo (February 12)
  • Michelle Trudeau (February 13)
  • Jerry Merrick (February 14)
  • Gary Grimes (February 21)
  • Scotty Selch (February 21)
  • Christa Nierzwick (February 22)
  • Lillian Perkins (February 25)

Happy Anniversary To:

  • Michelle & Mitch Kelley (February 2)
  • Lewis and Josephine Kelley (February 3)
  • Andy and Melody Burnett (February 20)
  • Jackson and Diane Mason (February 28)


  • Family Promise, February 7 - 13, 2016
  • Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper, February 9, 5:30 - 7pm 
  • Lenten Services, Ash Wednesday, February 10, 1pm & 7pm
  • Youth Spring Retreat at Waycross, Mar 4 - 6, 2016
  • Spring Clergy Conference at Waycross, Apr 4 - 6, 2016
  • Consecration and Seating of 11th Bishop (anticipated date) Apr 2017