The collect for today, the commemoration of Lindel Tsen (1885-1946), Bishop in China, consecrated 1929, and Paul Sasaki (1885-1954), Bishop in Japan, consecrated 1935 (source):
Almighty God, we offer thanks for the faith and witness of Paul Sasaki, bishop in the Nippon Sei Ko Kai [Anglican Church in Japan], tortured and imprisoned by his government, and Philip [Lindel] Tsen, leader of the Chinese Anglican Church, arrested for his faith. We pray that all Church leaders oppressed by hostile governments may be delivered by thy mercy, and that by the power of the Holy Spirit we may be faithful to the Gospel of our Savior Jesus Christ; who livest and reignest with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
The Epistle: 1 Thessalonians 2:1-8
The Gospel: St. Mark 4:26-32
The collect for today, the First Sunday in Lent, from The Book of Common Prayer (Canadian, 1962):
O LORD, who for our sake didst fast forty days and forty nights: Give us grace to use such abstinence, that, our flesh being subdued to the Spirit, we may ever obey thy godly motions in righteousness and true holiness, to thy honour and glory; who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, world without end. Amen.
The Epistle: 2 Corinthians 6:1-10
The Gospel: St Matthew 4:1-11
Artwork: Fra Angelico, The Temptation of Christ, 1436-45. Fresco, Museo Nazionale di San Marco, Florence. (The fresco depicts only two of Christ’s three temptations because it was cut away when the cell was partially demolished in order to open a window over the Cloister.)
The collect for today, The First Day of Lent, commonly called Ash Wednesday, from The Book of Common Prayer (Canadian, 1962):
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.
The Epistle: St James 4:6-11a
The Gospel: St Matthew 6:16-21
Artwork: Henryk Siemiradzki, Christ and a Sinner, 1875. Oil on canvas, The State Russian Museum, Saint Petersburg.
The collect for today, Quinquagesima, being the Fiftieth Day before Easter, from The Book of Common Prayer (Canadian, 1962):
O LORD, who hast taught us that all our doings without charity are nothing worth: Send thy Holy Spirit, and pour into our hearts that most excellent gift of charity, the very bond of peace and of all virtues, without which whosoever liveth is counted dead before thee. Grant this for thine only Son Jesus Christ’s sake. Amen.
The Epistle: 1 Corinthians 13:1-13
The Gospel: St. Luke 18:31-43
Artwork: Nicolas Colombel, Christ Healing the Blind, 1682. Oil on canvas, Saint Louis Art Museum.
The collect for today, Sexagesima (or the Second Sunday Before Lent) from The Book of Common Prayer (Canadian, 1962):
O LORD God, who seest that we put not our trust in any thing that we do: Mercifully grant that by thy power we may be defended against all adversity; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Epistle: 2 Corinthians 11:21b-31
The Gospel: St Luke 8:4-15
Artwork: John Everett Millais, The Sower, from Illustrations to `The Parables of Our Lord’, 1864. Wood engraving on paper, Tate Collections, London