Ash Wednesday opens the door to our Lenten season of renewal. This year it fell on Wednesday 14 February.

The Ash Wednesday service took place in churches across the Archdiocese to mark the start of the Lenten season.

The sign of the cross is made with ashes on the forehead, accompanied by the words: “Repent and believe in the Good News” or “Remember you are dust, and to dust you shall return”.

Lent is traditionally a 40-day fast — a reference to the time Jesus spent being tempted in the desert.

It is a time when we can prepare our hearts for the solemn remembrance of Jesus’ death.

It concludes and is followed by the Easter Sunday celebration of the resurrection of Christ.

The six-week period (excluding Sundays) is dedicated to prayer, fasting and almsgiving in preparation for the great celebration of Christ’s Paschal Mystery in the Easter Triduum.

This page will be updated as the season progresses.


Message of Pope Francis for Lent 2024

Through the Desert God Leads us to Freedom


Lent, Holy Week and Easter at St Chad's Cathedral

Palm Sunday, 24 March - Masses at 9.30am and 11.30am

Wed 27 March, Mass of Chrism - 11.30am

Thurs 28 March, Mass of the Lord's Supper - 7.30pm

Good Friday, 29 March - Walk of Witness starts at the Church at Carrs Lane at 10am ending at St Chad’s Cathedral.

Good Friday, 29 March - Solemn Liturgy 3pm

Holy Saturday, 30 March - Easter Vigil 8pm

Easter Sunday, 31 March - Masses at 9.30am and 11.30am


Resources and Retreats

Jump to:

Bible Society

Easter for Children and Families

Educational and Musical Resources

Environment

Catholic Bishops' Conference

God Who Speaks

CAFOD

Pact

Podcasts

Retreats

Written Resources


Liturgy and Worship Group Resource selections

Filmed by the Diocesan Liturgy and Worship Group for the 2022 Lenten season.


Bible Society - Journey through Lent, Easter and Pentecost

This Easter season, journey with Jesus on his path to the cross and celebrate his resurrection. Bible Society has a host of resources to help you reflect and celebrate.

Journey with Bible Society

Sign up for The Lent Encounter 2024 – The shadow of the cross and be encouraged as we journey together to Easter.

Every day throughout Lent on this journey in the shadow of the cross, you’ll receive a devotion by email with the option to listen to the words being read out by the author. You’ll arrive at your Easter celebrations with a renewed appreciation for all that Jesus accomplished on the cross.  

The Lent Encounter


For Children and Families

The Easter Donkey

The Easter Donkey is a lovely and interactive way to tell the Easter Story


Mission Together

Mission Together, the children’s branch of Missio – the Catholic Church’s official children’s charity for overseas mission, are offering a wealth of Lent resources. 

Including a Lenten calendar, liturgies, activities and prayers.

Mission Together at Lent


Hot Cross Bun recipe

This simple hot cross bun recipe for kids with step by step instructions is easy enough for children and beginner bakers to try.


Free downloadable cards for this Easter 

St Francis Leprosy Guild would like to offer parishes downloadable Easter cards featuring the crucifixion and their patron, St Francis.

There are seven different cards, each with an Easter design and the words Hallelujah! He is Risen! inside. Two of the cards are designed to appeal to children and one can be coloured in.

The cards are simple to make as follows:

  • download your favourite Easter cards by clicking on the links
  • print on normal A4-sized photocopy paper
  • fold in half and half again
  • add your own message
  • put in an A6-sized envelope and give to family and friends.       

Downloadable Easter Cards

Educational and Musical Resources

Songs of the Resurrection

CJM Music share 8 songs of the Resurrection.

Songs of the Resurrection

OneLife Music

Why not consider a full school retreat day during the important and wonderful season of Lent and use this opportune time to reflect as a school family on what it means to be a follower of Christ. In-person and online retreats available.

OneLife retreats

Mustard Seeds

Eight-part series exploring key dates and themes around Lent. Topics include the meaning of Ash Wednesday, the significance of the 40 Days and an insight into the important Catholic devotion of the Stations of the Cross.

A visual educational resource to aid our Catholic faith journey.

Mustard Seeds video series

Environment

Laudato Si' Lent Calendar 2024

Lent is a special season for reflection and action through prayer, fasting, and almsgiving, so this year we’ll live it more profoundly by focusing on the theme Stop and listen.

Stop and listen, because we are called to do so during the desert time of lent. This theme can remind us of the devotion of the Angelus and the biblical tradition of the Sabbath. It is above all a way to start or deepen our ecological conversion.

Every Sunday, the calendar will propose a meditation on the Gospel. Every weekday, a small reflection or image will be offered to “stop and listen” for a few minutes at a fixed time each day (we suggest that you set an alarm at noon). Every week, the reflections will be focused on a different theme to explore some dimensions of the ecological challenges we’re facing in Europe.

Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales

Lent is a time for turning again to the practice of our faith - in prayer, self-denial (fasting) and practical generosity (almsgiving).

Access a  host of resources:

Bishops' Conference

Reflections on the Gospel for the Sundays of Lent


God Who Speaks

The national Scripture campaign led by the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales and Bible Society continues.

Offering a wealth of resources for the season including an online Lenten calendar, posters, Seven Last Sayings of Jesus, Listening in Silence: Easter Glory, The Easter Story in Plain English.

Lent and Eastertide


CAFOD

Resources from CAFOD. Please also consider joining their Big Lent Walk to help fight global poverty.



CAFOD's Lent emails of prayer and reflection will offer an opportunity to pause, reflect, pray and take action as we prepare for Easter.

Join us as we journey through the Lent with our global family by signing up for our daily Lent emails


CAFOD Birmingham Lent spiritual reflection

Online event to deepen our spiritual journey in preparation for Lent. Led by Diocesan Deacon Sean Loone. Monday 19 February, 11am to 1pm.

All are welcome as we gather as a community of faith from the Archdiocese of Birmingham to deepen our spiritual journey in preparation for Lent.

Register for Reflection


Pact

The Prison Advice & Care Trust (Pact) is the national Catholic charity that supports prisoners, people with convictions, and their children and families. We provide caring and life changing services at every stage of the criminal justice process: in court, in prison, on release, and in the community.

Stations of the Cross liturgy prepared by Pact and including words from those who have lived experience of the criminal justice system. 

For example, former prisoners reflect on moments from their time in prison and their life afterward. People who have walked alongside family members in prison speak about how that felt.

Pact Stations of the Cross


Podcasts

The Bishops' Conference presents: Reading John in Lent.

During the weekdays and Saturdays of Lent, listen to daily podcasts from the Gospel of John – “the disciple whom Jesus loved”.

Listen to Podcasts


Retreats

St Michael's, Sonning Common

Exploring Prayer - A Lenten Retreat

Led by Deacon Brian Theobold and parishioners. 9.45am - 2.30pm on Saturday 9 March, beginning in the parish hall.

A day to discover or rediscover traditional forms of prayer and an opportunity to explore new ways of praying.

The day will be between you and God.

Please bring a packed lunch.


Reading: Douai Abbey Programme - Lent 2024

Saturday 10 February Pre-Lent Reflection: How can Lent bring Joy? led by Abbot Paul Gunter 
St Benedict mentions joy in his Rule solely to describe Lent! Liturgical texts and spiritual writings will provide the basis of our reflection on this season of joy.

Midweek 19-21 March Lent Retreat: Packing for the Wilderness led by Fr Peter Bowe 
A pathway through the frequent wilderness of our life, using Scripture images and texts. We shall explore real, actual challenges to living as “beloved disciples” of Christ, who died and rose for us.

Saturday 23 March Lent Reflection Day led by Barbara Priest, Anglican lay minister and Douai oblate 
Reflections on those who supported Jesus on his journey, called as friend. Scripture, reflection and music used for what they teach and how we can respond.

Thurs 28 - Sun 31 March Holy Week Retreat led by Sr Anne Swailes OP 
To enter more deeply into the Paschal Mystery, and to see the sufferings and joys of our own lives in its light. Reflection on texts, images and music inspired by Holy Week liturgy and events celebrated. Cost £250/£175 shared.

DOWNLOAD programme


Lent Retreat at Franciscan Centre, Ladywell, Surrey

Friday 16 February - Sunday 18 February

A Reflective Lenten journey led by Fr Caoimhin O Laoide.

Find out more and book

Easter Triduum Retreat at Franciscan Centre, Ladywell, Surrey

Thursday 28 March - Sunday 31 March

Join our community as we celebrate the Easter Triduum, as we recall and journey with Jesus in his last days, from his final meal with His disciples to His resurrection from the tomb.

Find out more and book

Lenten Meditations with Poetry and Art

Hosted by the Carmelite Friars, Oxford

Join online on February 15, 22, 29 and March 7 at 7pm.

A series of Zoom Lenten retreats to help you be more attentive to God’s loving presence in your life and in prayer through poetry and art.

Lenten Meditations

'Journey Towards Easter With the Psalms' online Lenten retreat

Hosted by the Carmelite Friars, Oxford

Taking place on Tuesday evenings - 12, 19 and 26 March - 7pm to 7.40pm.

The Psalms have a way of touching our hearts and bringing us into the divine presence in prayer. 

'Journey Towards Easter with the Psalms' will help us unravel the mystery we celebrate at Easter. With this retreat we put ourselves in the mood of the mysteries of the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the Redeemer, and their implications for us. Join us this Lent for a transformative experience.

Journey towards Easter with the Psalms

Written resources

Sharing in the Life of God - A Journey into the Real Meaning of Easter

Deacon Sean Loone of Our Lady of the Wayside parish in Shirley, Birmingham, has written ‘Sharing in the Life of God - A Journey into the Real Meaning of Easter’. 


A Cup of Cold Water: Finding Christ in the Sunday Gospels of Lent and Easter

New for 2024 from Deacon Sean Loone. The book comprises of a series of reflections taking the reader on a journey through Lent and Easter, Sunday by Sunday, with an accompanying Gospel passage and questions.

It is suitable for individual, or study group use.


Lectionary Readings for Lent

Commentary on every Scripture reading from Ash Wednesday to Good Friday by Fr Adrian Graffy, parish priest of Gidea Park and member of the Pontifical Biblical Commission.

Access Readings


Easter in the Holy Land
Friends of the Holy Land present a prayer resource bringing the reality of Easter in the Holy Land to life. 


Word on Fire
Word on Fire has created a brand-new book of reflections, meditations, prayers, Scripture and more for the seasons of Lent and Easter.

The Paschal Mystery: Reflections for Lent and Easter, includes an introduction and conclusion from Bishop Robert Barron and key passages for Lent and Easter from Sacred Scripture.

The Paschal Mystery

Also from Word on Fire, Lenten Gospel Reflections.

Pray with and reflect upon the Gospel readings this Lent with Bishop Barron and your parish or family.

Lenten Gospel Reflections

Walk with Me

Welcome to the Lenten edition of Walk with Me.

At the heart of this holy season is an invitation from the Father to return to him with all our heart; an opportunity to seek healing and to know the transforming mercy of God.

Also available is the Walk with Me Children’s Calendar and the Walk with Me Children’s Mini Mag.

Order Walk with Me products

Stations of the Cross from Alive Publishing, by Dr Anne Inman

Anne Inman taught theology at universities in and around London until retirement in 2014. She has published books on the philosophy of God, and the ministry of women in Anglo-Saxon England. She is currently working on the implications of recent advances in scriptural and historical research for traditional Catholic teaching.

The Stations of the Cross is an ancient but ever new spiritual discipline uniting us to the Passion of Christ. Drawing on rich and beautiful sources from St Augustine of Hippo, Jacopone da Todi, Julian of Norwich, Catherine of Genoa, Francis de Sales and many others these Stations of the Cross offers us a new and exciting way of meditating upon the cross upon which the Saviour died.

Order Stations of the Cross

Divine Renovation - Thriving Faith

Divine Renovation: How can we live and continue to grow spiritually as faithful disciples? In Thriving Faith, Fr James Mallon uses his personal experiences and deep understanding of the Catholic faith to reflect on how we can grow as disciples of Jesus.

Each chapter includes reflection questions: a perfect Lenten companion for individuals, with others in a small group, or as a parish.

Get your copy of Thriving Faith

Journey to Transformative Lent: A 40-Day Lenten Guide to Prayer, Reflection and Renewal

Published as a book and audio book by William Gomes.

The book provides daily readings, reflections and practical exercises for each of the 40 days of Lent, helping readers deepen their relationship with God and experience personal and spiritual growth. 

Book

Audio Book

The Way of the Cross A Lenten Devotion

Produced by the John Bradburne Memorial Society.

This Lenten booklet is prayerful, meditating on Christ’s journey along the 14 stations of the Way of the Cross.

May this Lenten journey be a time of self-discovery, renewal, and a deepening of our connection with the divine.

Order booklet