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Westminster John Knox Press is releasing two new Lenten titles this month

Tyler D. Mayfield, Mary Alice Birdwhistell and Elizabeth F. Caldwell are ready to take readers on two unique Lenten journeys

by Westminster John Knox Press | Special to Presbyterian News Service

Mary Alice Birdwhistell and Tyler D. Mayfield’s “Hard and Holy Work” takes readers through a unique Lenten journey, encouraging us to see those who are marginalized or suffering as God sees them; contemplate how privilege, fear, risk, and feelings of uncertainty can cloud our attention; and practice endurance for the messy middle of justice work, leaning on God’s provision and rest when the way forward is unclear.

Questions at the end of each chapter offer opportunities to discuss, reflect, and respond to God’s call through daily reflections for individuals, prompts for small group discussion, and ideas for taking action in the outward work of justice and liberation. To enhance your Lenten journey, access free resources, including sermon series prompts and chapter introduction videos from the authors here.

Elizabeth F. Caldwell’s “Pause” invites us to take up the spiritual practice of encountering, sinking into, and deeply engaging with one psalm each week during Lent and Holy Week.

Elizabeth F. Caldwell

The season of Lent encourages Christians to consider a different pace — one of slowing down, noticing, pausing — than what our dominant culture values. The invitation to pause with the Psalms begins on Ash Wednesday, starting with a mark of ashes on our foreheads that reminds us that in spite of our failures — things we have done or failed to do — we belong to God.

Readers are then guided into an exploration of Psalm 51 and the theme of a clean heart. Each chapter helps readers to connect an image drawn from that psalm, such as paths, faces, blessing, tables, waiting, thanksgiving, listening, being alone or abandoned and hands. At the close of each chapter, readers are invited to try a different prayer practice to help them continue to reflect on the theme and psalm each day. This intentional engagement — without feeling burdensome — opens just enough space and time for a creative spiritual practice to flourish, sustaining the life of faith during the Lenten season in ways that can make a difference in God’s world.

In addition to the individual devotion and group study material found in the book, you can access free digital resources, which include a sermon series guide, reflection videos, children’s bulletins, and illustrated sheets for use during worship or study, by going here.

For press inquiries please contact Natalie Smith at

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