Lent is a season of repentance and preparation for renewal with God and God's purposes. Through the years of connecting with our Native American ministries, I have discerned that at the core of Native American spirituality is a deep reverence for the Creator and all that the Creator made: the earth, all forms of life, the rocks, the sky, the sun, the stars, the heavens. They bring a depth of understanding to the Christian faith that should evoke a sense of humility and guide our responsibility for the whole of creation.
Cover me with ashes, the thick-smoke soot of the earth. Make my breathing like the journey from death into life -- second by second, prayer by prayer.
Bishop Gregory V. Palmer expresses his thanks to pastors, congregations and members in the Illinois Great Rivers Conference for support on a number of conference initiatives.
During these Lenten days I have been thinking a great deal about the practice of forgiveness. I did not necessarily begin this season with a plan to spend a lot of energy focused on forgiveness as a Christian practice, but for a number of reasons it took a prominent place on my radar screen. This was mostly as a result of things that I was invited to help tend through my work. As these things came to me the fractures in relationships especially in the body of Christ simply could not be ignored. So beyond the work, I needed to claim anew the reality and power of forgiveness.