Diocese of Derry


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Ash Wednesday, 17 February 2021

On Ash Wednesday, we begin again our Lenten journey of renewal and conversion.

Traditionally, on this day we have our foreheads marked with ashes in the sign of the Cross with the words: 'Dust you are and into dust you shall return'

We pray that Lent 2021 will be a journey of renewal for families, for the community, and for the world. 

Prayer resources for Parish and Home

Ash Wednesday Prayer Service for Families at home 

This year as we are unable to be marked by ashes in our churches, we offer this simple prayer resource to support families in prayer on Ash Wednesday at home.

Thank you to the Northern Pastoral Network - Diocese of Clogher for sharing this resource.

How to create a Sacred Space in your home for Lent 

Why not make a Sacred Space in your home this Lent?

A place of quiet, of peace, where you can talk to Jesus and tell him how you care for yourself and others; and how you reach out in love. 

Here are is a guide on how to create a Lenten Sacred Space in your Home created by the Derry Diocesan Catechetical Centre

Ash Wednesday Home Prayer Liturgy

This short Liturgy (Prayer service) contains the words to the Gospel on Ash Wednesday, a guide of prayer someone can lead and others respond to and a concluding prayer.

An Act of Spiritual Communion in Lent

Bishop Donal explains how for various reasons, like now during the coronavirus pandemic, we may be prevented from receiving the Eucharist at Mass. In this short video, Bishop Donal explains what an Act of Spiritual Communion is.

(Click the play button on the video to hear Bishop Donal's message).

"My Jesus, I believe that you desire to make your home within me and that you are present in the Most Holy Sacrament of the altar. I love you above all things, and I desire to receive you in my soul. Since I cannot at this moment receive you sacramentally, come spiritually into my heart. I embrace your love as if you were already here, I unite myself wholly to you. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen."

If you wish further material for prayer or reflection, please read St John's Gospel, Chapter 6.

Prayer for Lent

Loving Father,
To prepare for His mission of proclaiming Your
kingdom to the world
Your Son Jesus was guided by Your Holy Spirit to the
quiet of the desert.

In these Lenten days, I pray that I will be guided by
that same Spirit,
to a place of renewal in my heart and mind, so that I
will seek opportunities for
daily personal prayer, personal sacrifices and acts of

With Your help, may I too be truly prepared to share in the story of the passion,
death and resurrection of Jesus Your Son, our Lord.


Lenten Promise Card

The Thornhill Lenten (Scratch) Calendar is a good way of journeying through the six-weeks of Lent 2021. 

A NOVEL WAY OF KEEPING LENT BY SCRACTHING OFF EACH DATE TO FIND A DAILY CHALLENGE TO PRAY, or TO FAST, or TO GIVE. This has proven to be a very popular way for many to sustain their engagement with the 6-week season of Lent. Cost £1

Available via email (secretary@thornhillministries.co.uk), phone (077 368 32 458) or facebook messaging (@thornhillministries), just send a text or message and Thornhill Ministries will get them to you!

Great for home schooling - designed particularly with younger people in mind - though all tasks are suitable too for older children!

Other resources for Lent 

View more resource for Lent on our social media channels

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Contact Info

Diocesan Offices
St Eugene’s Cathedral
Francis Street, Derry
BT48 9AP | Tel: 028 7126 2302

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