PARKERSBURG - First Lutheran Church, 19th and Plum streets, is preparing for the 40 days of Lent.
Services will be a continuing focus on the cross, according to the Rev. Ian B. Reid Sr., pastor at First Lutheran.
First Lutheran will again join with its sister church, Christ Lutheran Church, 46th and Grand Central Avenue, and the Rev. Emilie Theobald-Rowlands to share in the Lenten observance.
The Lenten season will kick off with a special Shrove Tuesday pancake dinner at 6 p.m. at First Lutheran and will be hosted by the youth of the church.
Donations will be taken with all proceeds going toward transportation for the annual youth summer mission trip to New York City.
Ash Wednesday will begin the Lenten season with services at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. Feb. 13 at First Lutheran. Both services will include disposition of ashes and communion.
The weekly Lenten worship services will begin 1 p.m. Feb. 20 at First Lutheran. All of the weekly 1 p.m. services will be preceded by a luncheon at noon.
Luncheons will include a main course, homemade bread, a vegetable, dessert and beverage. Cost will be $5 and will support transportation for youth to Camp Luther in June.
The weekly evening worship services will begin at 7 p.m., preceded with a light meal at 6 p.m. Evening services and meals will be at First Lutheran Church on Feb. 20, 27 and March 20.
On March 6 and 13, the meals and services will be at Christ Lutheran Church.
A love offering will be taken at the evening meals.
During both Wednesday meals there will also be discussions centering on the book "Too Busy Not to Pray" by Bill Hybels which many in the congregation are currently reading. A few copies of the book are still available for sale at First Lutheran, or available online.
All of these services are open to the public and everyone is welcome. Both First Lutheran and Christ Lutheran are handicap accessible.
For further information, call First Lutheran Church, 304-428-6174.
The Middlebourne United Methodist Church will also celebrate the Lenten season with special services and events to prepare for the Lord's Resurrection Sunday.
The United Methodist Women will host a Shrove Tuesday pancake dinner from 4-6 p.m. Feb. 12 in the Friendship Center.
Donations of $5 for adults or $3 for children 10 and under will provide all-you-can-eat pancakes or buckwheat cakes, sausage patties, fruit cup, tea, coffee, juice or milk.
The Ash Wednesday service will begin at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 13. The fifth Sunday in Lent will fall on St. Patrick's Day, March 17. To celebrate, the 10:45 a.m. morning worship service will feature Irish hymns and the history of the shamrock.
On Palm Sunday, March 24, the children will carry palms into the sanctuary as they mark Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem.
Maundy Thursday communion will be served March 28 at the Middlebourne Baptist Church, and Middlebourne United Methodist Church will host the community Good Friday service at 6:30 p.m. March 29.
On a date to be announced, the children of MUMC will host an Easter egg hunt to share the Easter story using Resurrection Eggs.
An Easter sunrise service at MUMC March 31 will be followed by breakfast in the Friendship Center. The children's and adult Sunday school classes will begin that morning at 9:30 a.m.; followed by the Easter worship service at 10:45 a.m.