We are once again blessed to have weekly Lenten lunches at several of our community churches in Crestview. This is such a wonderful way to get to know fellow Christians in our community and to have fellowship with one another.

This year's lunches start with a gathering at 11:45 a.m. Thursdays, with the luncheon beginning at noon.

Churches will accept a free-will offering to offset the cost of the luncheons. Here is the schedule:

•Feb. 22 — New Bethel United Methodist 5986 State Road 85 N., Crestview. The speaker is Michael Tugwell.

•March 1 — First United Methodist 599 8th Ave., Crestview. The speaker is the Rev. Darryl Hooks.

•March 8 — First Presbyterian 492 N. Ferdon Blvd., Crestview. The speaker is the Rev. Michael Precht

•March 15 — Our Lady of Victory, 550 Adams Drive, Crestview. The speaker is the Rev. Gary Jones.

•March 22 — Mt. Zion AME Church, 502 McDonald St., Crestview. The speaker is the Rev. Mark Broadhead.

Wonderful lunches have always been served, followed by an inspirational message given by the speaker of the day. I can't emphasize enough how much fun it is to get to know believers from other churches here in our area. Please plan on attending. You will be thrilled that you did when you make new friends.

Last week, I wrote about spending more time in the Scripture and in prayer during this Lenten season. The Gospels of Luke and John would make excellent reading this time of year, and here are some specific prayer requests:

•Our police, sheriff's and fire departments, for wisdom and safety

•Our EMTs and emergency room staff, for wisdom and timely decisions

•Our city and county officials and county, state and federal judges

•Our state and federal leaders, elected, and non-elected

•Our pastors/priests, church staff, church council, and deacons

•Our school administration, teachers and students, for safety and wisdom

•That the Lord would meet the daily needs of those facing hardships

•Your children, your neighbors and your friends

You may also wish to pray for the following:

•Safety for people in war-torn countries

•The Lord shield Christians being persecuted around the world and that they would remain faithful

•Missionaries sharing the gospel

•For the homeless, that solutions will be found, as well as shelter, food and jobs

•For those addicted to unhealthy lifestyles, that they would be delivered from their addiction

Janice Lynn Crose, a former accountant, lives in Crestview with her husband, Jim; her two rescue collies, Shane and Jasmine; and two cats, Kathryn and Prince Valiant.