Lent Small Group Study

by | Jan 18, 2015 | Uncategorized

Lent 2014Practices of Releasing
Small Group Study – Lent 

Welcome to this Resource Page where you will find what you need for leading the Lent Study.

Please feel free to share this page with all the leaders on your Pastoral Charge/Parish if you have more than one group. You are also welcome to share the page with the members of your groups. Your registration covers use for your Pastoral Charge/Group/Parish.

The Audio Recordings are easier than ever to download and save to your laptop/computer so you can play them without an internet connection. Look for the download icon download-simple-black-icon-512 in the top right hand corner of the audio track and follow the download directions.

The print files are available in PDF version. You can also download and save these to your computer.

Please, if you have any issues with downloading or opening files email me and I will do whatever I can to help or send you materials another way. Email

As you begin meeting with your groups, I also encourage you to ‘leave a comment’ below introducing yourself and where you are from and describe your group. This helps us hold one another in prayer as we journey through Lent together.

Click here to download an image of the icon for this series if you want it for a poster. Right click to save it.
Photo: Janice MacLean

PLEASE NOTE: With thanks to Vicky May from Woodlawn United Church, there are written scripts for Session 2,3 and 5. Thank you Vicky.

Session 1: Original Goodness

Click on the words to open the document. Right click to ‘save as’ to download and save on your computer.

Leader Page – Session 1: Original Goodness

Participant Page – Session 1

Script Original Goodness – Session 1

Audio Recording

Session 2: Violence & Forgiveness

Click on the words to open the document. Right click to ‘save as’ to download and save on your computer.

Leader Page – Session 2: Violence & Forgiveness

Participant Page – Session 2: Violence & Forgiveness

Script: Session 2 – with thanks to Vicky May

Audio Recording

Session 3: Grief and Healing

Leader Page – Session 3: Grief & Healing

Participant Page – Session 3: Grief & Healing

Script: Session 3 – with thanks to Vicky May

Audio Recording

Session 4: Fear & Courage

Leader Page – Session 4: Fear & Courage

Script: Fear & Courage

Participant Page – Session: Fear & Courage

Audio Recording

Session 5: Scarcity & Abundance 

Leader Page – Session 5: Scarcity & Abundance

Participant Page – Session 5: Scarcity & Abundance

Script: Session 3 – with thanks to Vicky May

Audio Recording


Session 6: A Closing Liturgy

Leader Page – Session 6: A Closing Liturgy

Participant Page – Session 6: A Closing Liturgy

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  1. Janice – What a delight today was. My group meets every Wednesday at 11am and it was a gentle, passionate beginning. We were engaged by your audio presentation. It sparked lots of discussion as our 1 hour flew by.

    As a leader I really appreciated all the material I had at my disposal and the freedom it allowed me to adapt it to my groups personality. One person said, “She seems to have a celtic soul”. And so you do.

  2. Janice, I am so excited to be leading this series at Woodlawn United in Dartmouth. Seven or more of us will start meeting next week. You have written a very inspired and helpful series. We will pray for the other 30 or so groups that will be meeting. All set to go for “Original Goodness”. We are substituting Edwina Gateley’s “Full Circle” from “Growing into God” for the scripture reading. I’ll let you know how it goes. Thanks!

  3. Dear Janice, we had our first session last week and will have the second one tomorrow – at St. George & St. Andrew United in Annapolis Royal. The 14 participants loved it- and commented on your gentle presence, and the gentle feel in our circle. This is the first time that I have used one of your programs – and I find it a very good fit for us – easily useable and easily adaptable where needed. All I felt I wanted to do differently for the first session was to choose a passage from Genesis 1 about the goodness of creation instead of Noah. Tomorrow I will be adding a passage from “Don’t forgive too soon!” from the Linn brothers.Thank you for this helpful series which is building and deepening community among us.

  4. Thank you all. I love hearing about your groups.

  5. Our group of 13 met last night at Woodlawn United for session 2. Most of us were not familiar with The Message so I’m grateful for your introducing it to us. Lloyd’s talk was a great catalyst to discussing our own feelings on violence and forgiveness and discuss we did! The conversation was very caring, very powerful and gave us much to think about. Your discussion questions were well chosen. Thank you for this gift, Janice. In need of still more group love we ended with VU#964 Go Now in Peace which we sang and moved.
    Go now in peace (standing in a tight circle, sweep left forward and to left, looking at others)
    Go now in peace (sweep right hand forward and to right, looking at others)
    May the love of God surround you (bring up left hand and behind back of person on your left)
    Everywhere, everywhere, ( right arm up and around back of person on your right)
    You may go. (results in a group hug! Take time to savor it.)

  6. Hi Janice, We had our first meeting last week with your material on Original Goodness. The dialogue was very good . The statement that we need “more God” was a opening to a new way of thinking about God for me. I think that is the question that all congregations need to think about . how do we get more God into our lives. Thanks for your Excellant programming .W e used mandelas for our spiritual practice. the group were pleased to notice how quiet there minds became . Looking forward to using the second lesson on Mar. 30th.

  7. I’ve just now ordered this- and am going to use our imminent snowstorm as an opportunity to go through it. We couldn’t quite manage to schedule a Lenten series this year, with people being away and with the continual snow delays and cancellations- so I am opting to offer a Day of Reflection- in which there seems to be a lot of interest. I’m going to be sharpening up skills I haven’t used much lately to adapt these resources as best I can into a Day, which I think I can make work with the people I’m going to have there. I’ll do my best to do justice to both the material and my group. I anticipate giving them a lot of take-home resources- and if they want a follow-up session, we shall certainly have one. I know the St Croix Presbytery Wellness Centre has been very much enjoying this study, which they offer every Wed. morning [weather permitting- I’m suspecting they’re a bit behind!]

  8. Hi Jane. Thanks for the order. Good idea. I think it is adaptable for a day long event. I’m glad to hear the Wellness centre has been enjoying it!

  9. I have participated in 3 sessions. It is so good to share in our small group. I love the variety of offerings – reading, listening, sharing and the weekly releasing practices. I found the body prayer of clenching/releasing truly shifted something for me. Anne

  10. All 6 of us finally got together for Session 3 last Tuesday (We are a week behind) here in Morse SK. The week before the 4 of us who were able to be together never got past the first question we were so engrossed in our discussion! So this week I said I was skipping the first question so we might get to the others! We have certainly had lots of food for thought. The first week I also used the Story of the Golden Buddha which seemed to fit very well with the theme. We’ve been using “Seven Whispers for the Dawning of a New Day from the writings of Christina Baldwin for our opening as an addition to the candle lighting. Closing with the releasing practices is going well I think. Thanks, Janice, for this opportunity to join you again.

  11. Thanks for your descriptions. It’s great to get a little taste of the groups!

  12. Thank you Janice for creating the Releasing Lent exploration and thank you to Lloyd Bruce, Leslie Read, Laura Hunter and Janice MacLean who gave our group many ideas for wide ranging discussions as we applied each topic to ourselves and to our congregations. Energy flowed as we felt the Spirit’s guidance and presence. As the leader, I appreciated all of the guidance..it was detailed, but it allowed flexibility.
    …Elsie MacDonald

  13. Good Morning,

    I just purchased this Study Lesson yesterday and I went through it this morning and I am delighted with it. I’m wondering folks would mind sharing ways they have found that encourage folks to join a study group?

    Thank you,


  14. Thank you, Catherine. This is a great question. I am working on the Feb. newsletter. With your permission, can I shae your question and invite responses that I will include in a blog post. It might reach a bigger group of people and it would be wonderful to have the diversity of response there can be in the newsletter list. – Janice

  15. Absolutely and thank you so much!

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