Church Seasons / Season After Pentacost

season after pentacost

The Season after Pentecost, also called Ordinary Time, begins the day after Pentecost and ends the day before the First Sunday of Advent. It may include twenty-three to twenty eight Sundays, depending on the date of Easter, but the first Sunday is always Trinity Sunday, and the last Sunday is always the Sunday of the Reign of Christ or Christ the King. The season also includes All Saints and Thanksgiving.

United Methodists have the option of calling this season Kingdomtide, a term first used in 1937 in a book sponsored by the former Federal Council of Churches a s a name for the half year between the Day of Pentecost and Advent, during which churches are urged to emphasize Jesus’ teachings concerning the kingdom of God. In 1940 the season was shortened to three months, beginning the last Sunday in August. The former Methodist Church adopted it in its shortened three-month form in the 1945 and 1965 editions of The Book of Worship. Today, no other denomination uses the term Kingdomtide.

Although the scripture lessons in the lectionary for this half of the year go in a semi-continuous cycle through books of the Bible rather than follow a theme, the gospel lessons cover Jesus’ teaching ministry and tend to center on the theme of the kingdom and reign of God. Thus this half of the year can fully serve the purposes intended for Kingdomtide in its original six-month form.

Paraments, stoles, and banners may show a variety of colors, texture, and symbols. Regardless of the name given to this season, its basic color is green, symbolizing growth in Christ. White is the customary color for Trinity Sunday, All Saints, and Reign of Christ/Christ the King Sunday. Red is appropriate for homecomings, anniversaries, evangelistic services, consecrations, and civil holidays. The scripture readings or theme for a particular Sunday may suggest colors, textures, or symbols for the visuals used that day. A lesson on children, for example, might suggest using art by children. used by (permission from The United Methodist Book of Worship, 1992)

(used by permission from The United Methodist Book of Worship, 1992) For more information and resources go to the UM website and search for Pentecost, Ordinary Time, or Kingdomtide: