While we in the ICOC fellowship of churches intentionally have not adopted a traditional liturgical calendar to organize our worship, and so we have no “official” Lenten practice, there are many beautiful customs observed at this time of year by various Christian denominations. These have developed over the centuries in different cultures, and can help to enhance our experience and appreciation of the astounding miracle of the empty tomb on Easter morning; even though as disciples, ideally, we celebrate the risen Lord every day.

A Lenten fast, observed in many Christian denominations, is intended to prepare the hearts of worshippers for Easter, by imitating Jesus’ 40 days of fasting, prayer, and preparation in the desert before taking on his ministry and facing his cross. In the Bible, “many women” came and followed him after that period of preparation (Matthew 27:55). We offer you here an in-depth look at their lives as they made their way to the foot of the cross. May we also find the strength and courage in the Holy Spirit to daily imitate their faith and gain the joy of the same sweet victory alongside them, as we take up our own crosses every morning, following the same Lord, and find our way to the same joy and power of his resurrection!

Click here for Week 1 of devotionals.