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The First Day of Lent 
COMMONLY CALLED 
Ash Wednesday

 

 

SERMONS AND

COMMENTARY

 

Patristic / Medieval 

Tertullian (On Fasting)
Chrysostom (Gospel)
Augustine 1 (Gospel)
Augustine 2 (Gospel)

Leo the Great:
   Sermon on Lent, I 
   Sermon on Lent, II
   Sermon on Lent, IV
   Sermon on Lent, VIII
   Sermon on Lent, XI

 

Catena Aurea (Gospel)

 

Reformation 

Calvin (Gospel)
Calvin (Epistle)
 

Caroline Divines 
Ken (Pastoral Letter to Clergy for Lent)
Sparrow (On Lent & Sundays)

 

Evangelical Revival 
Wesley's Sermon (Gospel) 
Wesley's Notes (Gospel)
Wesley's Notes (Epistle) 

 

Oxford Movement 
Blunt's Commentary 
Scott's Commentary 

 
Recent 
Benedict XVI

Common Prayer  Commentary 

Crouse

Curry 1

Curry 2
Sisterman 
Tarsitano 

 

Other 
Matthew Henry (Gospel) 
Matthew Henry (Epistle) 

 

Additional Materials 

Keble poem - Ash Wednesday from The Christian Year 
 
George Herbert - Poem for Lent
 
T. S. Eliot - Six Poems for Ash Wednesday (copyright prevents publishing these poems, but see one of Curry's sermons or find them on this bold website)


 

 

  THE COLLECT.     
Almighty and everlasting God, who hatest nothing that thou hast made, and dost forgive the sins of all them that are penitent: Create and make in us new and contrite hearts, that we, worthily lamenting our sins, and acknowledging our wretchedness, may obtain of thee, the God of all mercy, perfect remission and forgiveness; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.
This Collect is to be read every day in Lent after the Collect appointed for the Day. 

[in the 1662 BCP] 
FOR THE EPISTLE.   Joel 2. 12 
TURN ye even to me, saith the Lord, with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning.  And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the Lord your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.  Who knoweth if he will return, and repent, and leave a blessing behind him, even a meat-offering and a drink-offering unto the Lord your God?  Blow the trumpet in Zion, sanctify a fast, call a solemn assembly, gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children, and those that suck the breasts; let the bridegroom go forth of his chamber, and the bride out of her closet.  Let the priests, the ministers of the Lord, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, Spare thy people, O Lord, and give not thine heritage to reproach, that the heathen should rule over them: wherefore should they say among the people, Where is their God?

[in the 1962 Canadian BCP] 
THE EPISTLE.    St. James 4. 6
GOD bestowed abundant grace; wherefore the Scripture saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.  Submit yourselves therefore to God.  Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you.  Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double-minded.  Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness.  Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.  Speak not evil one to another, brethren. 

THE GOSPEL.  S. Matth. 6. 16
AND Jesus spake unto his disciples, saying, When ye fast, be not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast.  Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.  But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thine head, and wash thy face, that thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father, which seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly.  Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: for where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

 

  INTROIT.  Ps 57:1-7 
BE merciful unto me, O God, be merciful unto me; / for my soul trusteth in thee;
2 And under the shadow of thy wings shall be my refuge, / until this tyranny be overpast.
3 I will call unto the most high God, / even unto the God that shall perform the cause which I have in hand.
4 He shall send from heaven  and save me, / even from the reproach of him that would eat me up.
5 God shall send forth his mercy and truth; / my soul is among lions.
6 And I lie even among the children of men, that are set on fire, / whose teeth are spears and arrows, and their tongue a sharp sword.
Ant.  Set up thyself, O God, above the heavens, / and thy glory above all the earth.
Glory be.  Repeat Antiphon.

GRADUAL.  Ps 103:8-14  
8 The Lord is full of compassion and gracious, / long-suffering, and of great goodness.
9 He will not alway be chiding: / neither keepeth he his anger for ever.
10 He hath not dealt with us after our sins, / nor rewarded us according to our wickednesses.
11 For look how high the heaven is in comparison of the earth, / so great is his mercy also toward them that fear him.
12 Look how wide also the east is from the west, / so far hath he set our sins from us.
13 Yea, like as a father pitieth his own children, / even so is the Lord merciful unto them that fear him.
14 For he knoweth whereof we are made: / he remembereth that we are but dust.