Community UMC, 20 Center St, Naperville, IL 60540

Welcoming All People and Creating Positive Change


Wed Mar 02 2022 - Sun Apr 17 2022


All Day

Sundays in Lent 2022

2nd Sunday3rd Sunday4th Sunday5th SundayPalm Sunday

Join us in worship at 9:00 am and 11:00 am, in-person or online!

Sun Mar 6: 1st Sunday in Lent

Luke 4:1-13 | Deuteronomy 26:1-11

Even in the desert, Jesus expands our definitions of a full life. It’s not the life the Tempter presents: a life defined by excess power, control, or reign. Excess is not abundance, but there is more. There is a fuller life we are called to live. Even in the midst of struggle, oppressive forces, hardship, and grief—God’s promises spill over, like the bounty of the first fruits from the ground. Even in the desert, you are called to the riverside to be washed by grace.

Sun Mar 13: 2nd Sunday in Lent

Luke 13:31-35 | Psalm 27

God is our refuge. There is nothing that can separate you from God, or could keep God from gathering you in, protecting you fiercely. Jesus’ lament for Jerusalem is surprising given how he is treated by Jerusalem. And yet, no matter how much we try to separate ourselves from God, God will run to protect us. God’s love for us is fuller than we can imagine. [back to top ↑]

Sun Mar 20: 3rd Sunday in Lent

Luke 13:1-9 | Isaiah 55:1-9

Like the fig tree, you are worthy. You’re not a lost cause. You’re not a waste of resources. You deserve to be nurtured. Your fruit will come. Like the gardener, you are invited to see others with audacious hope and budding potential. The lesson of the fig tree invites us to unpack the source of our worth in a system and society that often measures worthiness by commerce, production, output, success, status, achievement, ethnicity, and/or gender identity. We might ask, “Can the fig tree have worth even if it never produces any figs?” What does that mean for us if the answer is “yes”? [back to top ↑]

Sun Mar 27: 4th Sunday in Lent

Luke 15:1-3, 11b-32 | 2 Corinthians 5:16-21

The word “prodigal” is commonly used to describe the son who squanders his inheritance. Yet, this parable invites us to consider how God’s grace is also prodigal—extravagant, lavish, illogical. This parable disrupts and expands our definitions of grace. Once again, grace is not earned. After wasting his resources, the younger son becomes destitute and returns home to his father, saying, “I am no longer worthy.” His father, instead, greets him with a celebration and the fatted calf. The older son, in contrast, has done everything “right”—he’s tried to perform, work hard, check all the boxes—but he forgets how to celebrate. How might you receive and extend prodigal grace? [back to top ↑]

Sun Apr 3: 5th Sunday in Lent

John 12:1-8 | Isaiah 43:16-21

God is brazen in turning tears into joy. Not so long after their brother, Lazarus, dies and is raised from the dead, Mary and Martha joyfully welcome Jesus into their home. Mary pours out the fragrant perfume (perhaps originally intended to anoint her brother’s body after death) and it fills the whole room. This is a brazen act of beauty. Beauty is resistance to death; beauty is an act of love. Her anointing of Jesus’ feet is also a public act of worship. Her faith does not hide; it is not frugal. It is embodied, broken open, and poured out. This isn’t a frugal faith—it is an abundant, extravagant faith. Mary’s act is also risky—she puts her full body into it, sort of like a protest. She exhibits a shameless and brazen faith. [back to top ↑]

Sun Apr 10: Palm Sunday

Luke 19:28-40

As Jesus enters Jerusalem, the multitude of disciples begins to joyfully shout with praise. The Pharisees try to silence them, but Jesus responds: “I tell you, even if these were silent, the stones would shout out.” All of creation cries out with praise—that message rises above the noise, even if the oppressive powers want to silence it. As we begin our walk through Holy Week, let us ask: What can’t be silenced? What must be said? What things can we not stay quiet about? What is bubbling up that we need to give voice to—faith questions, apologies, issues of justice, truth-telling? As we go deeper into the story, the truth will soon be set free. [back to top ↑]

Community UMC, 20 Center St, Naperville, IL 60540