Well, friends, as we bask in the warm glow of the Resurrection with Holy Week and Easter 2011 in the rear-view mirror, it’s time to sit back and take stock of what really matters: How can we improve upon Lent Madness in 2012?
This year featured more participation than ever vote-wise (top contest was Becket vs. Perpetua with 258 votes cast) and included “celebrity” bloggers for the Final Four. To recap, we started with our usual number of 32 saints and whitled them down to award the Golden Halo to C.S. Lewis. I offered basic information about the saints in the initial round along with the collect appointed for the particular saint’s day. Quotes and Quirks formed the basis of the next round followed by Saintly Kitsch. The four bloggers were great (thank you Scott Gunn, Penny Nash, Neil Allan Willard, and Meredith Gould!) and then we ended up with Lewis taking on Becket in a hotly contested Lent Madness Final.
So, I’m seeking advice/ideas for next year. I’m thinking about putting together a Steering Committee to help with the selection and bear some of the heat for not including your favorite saint. I’d also like to include more celebrity bloggers — eight? Sixteen? It might be hard to find 16 people who are similarly passionate about a particular (different) saint. But in any case I’d love to see more people be involved in the process.
I think we need to time this so it ends before Holy Week — perhaps on Palm Sunday? It was a lot managing the end of Lent Madness and juggling all the liturgies/sermons. But that may just be the whiny parish priest in me. Did you like that it extended into Holy Week or was it a distraction?
One idea for 2012 was to have the bracket consisted entirely of proposed saints for Holy Men/Holy Women. the proposed book to replace Lesser Feasts and Fasts. We could then forward the results to General Convention since I’m certain we would have tremendous pull. How could they not heed the advice of such reverent and scientific voting statistics?
The problem with this is that it might narrow the interest to Episcopal Church minutiae geeks and General Convention delegates. And, while some of my best friends fall into this category, it may bee too exclusive to be relevant. So far, in the two years we’ve done this, I’ve only used saints from the Episcopal Church’s Calendar of Saints. We could conceivably open it to other saints not included in our calendar — thoughts?
We could also use a Lent Madness logo if anyone has graphic art talents. Wouldn’t that be cool? Or maybe even a specific Lent Madness website and a social media coordinator.
So let me know if you have thoughts or ideas for next year and whether you’d be willing to pitch in and how. With your help we can make this an even more meaningful Lenten devotion and take it to the masses!
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Peace and Easter blessings,