One of the most important observances in the Catholic Church. This event unfolds the story of betrayal, denial, suffering, sacrifice, forgiveness, and love. This is the season of Lent.
As Catholics, we celebrate Lent every year to commemorate Christ's passion, death, and resurrection. Lent in Latin is "Quadragesima", which means 40. Lent is a 40-day liturgical season of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. It begins on Ash Wednesday and lasts for 40 days (not counting Sundays) up to Easter, during Christ's resurrection. During this season of Lent, Catholics devote themselves to prayer by allowing Christ to be the center of their lives. Lent is all about our self-conversion and turning ourselves to God.
Let L.E.N.T be our guide to make our lent holy.
Love unconditionally-Lent is all about love. Yes! You heard me correctly. Someone gave His life for others that are total and selfless. It is Jesus Christ who showed us what unconditional love means. To love beyond our capacity is to allow the grace of God to work in us and give us strength. Lent is more of Him and less of us. Sometimes we like what's not essential in life, and it's tough for us to let go. Unconsciously, these things tend to drive us apart from God, and we are more likely to think of ourselves than others. Sometimes we are consumed with our pride and worldly things, which could prevent God from working in our lives. This Lenten season, we are called to give up any unexamined values that we couldn't bring with us to heaven. But in giving up, not only to give up something but there is a desire to see the face of Christ in our hearts because we love him.
Here are some guides to make this lent more loving.
Be charitable to others by giving alms to the needy.
Devote more time to God through prayer and meditation.
Inspire and encourage people, especially those who are lonely.
Talk, call or have a virtual meeting with your loved ones and friends.
If you have an opportunity, serve your family and serve your Parish.
Observe fasting and abstinence. (not just for the physical but also on the Spiritual side)
ENERGIZED by the Holy Spirit-The Holy Spirit sanctifies us. It inspires us and gives us the power to carry out God's work. Have you ever been through moments where you feel hesitant or tired of sharing the Gospel? The best way is by praying for the Holy Spirit. We should ask the Holy Spirit for understanding and wisdom to boldly share the gospel with others. We shouldn't stop proclaiming the love of God and His mercy, despite the pandemic. Pope Francis reminds us to be merciful by sharing materials and spiritual needs with our brothers and sisters. When was the last time I shared Jesus' Gospel? Or be merciful to others? In his general audience, the Pope continues that Mercy is not only reserved for particular moments, but it embraces our entire daily existence. We continue to be merciful and loving. We implore the Holy Spirit to open our hearts to see Christ to the less fortunate and destitute. This is the best time to practice the corporal and spiritual works of mercy (with a necessary precautions due to covid19).
St. Augustine's Prayer to the Holy Spirit.
Breathe in me O Holy Spirit, that my thoughts may all be holy. Act in me O Holy Spirit, that my work, too, may be holy. Draw my heart O Holy Spirit, that I love but what is holy. Strengthen me O Holy Spirit, to defend all that is holy. Guard me, then, O Holy Spirit, that I always may be holy. Amen.
NEVER cease to pray-Jesus spent the time praying and fasting in the desert for forty days where he was tempted by Satan (Matthew 4:1-11) and in Gethsemane too (Matthew 26:36-56). Jesus always prayed before and after His mission which we are called to imitate every day. By connecting with God through our prayers, we maintain a profound relationship with him. Prayer is powerful. Prayer can change the way we live and the way we think. Because in prayer, God reveals something great in us.
How to connect God during Lent.
Pray in private and pray with the whole family every day.
Pray the Holy Rosary. Consecration to St. Joseph and other Saints
Pray to the Holy Spirit. Attend Holy Mass. (actual or Virtual)
Visit the adoration chapel.
Watch religious movies or the life of a Saints.
Attend online Catholic teachings and inspirational talks.
Attend a Liturgical bible study.
Do pilgrimage or visit churches with the whole family or friends to pray.
Attend Lenten Recollection and Retreat.
TOTAL commitment and be faithful-As renewed and saved by Christ, we commit our lives to the sacraments available in the Church. Our God is faithful, and His grace is always ready to come down on us. To be holy is to be faithful to God. Mother Teresa said, "God has not called me to be successful, He's called me to be faithful." Faithful to God is what makes a saint, Saint. Despite life's trials and difficulties, we continue to hang on to the Lord and believe in His ways.
go to confession often
receive Holy Communion. (if allowed during a pandemic)
forgive and reconcile the persons we hurt and those who hurt us.
our family time and to love our spouse.
our professional work to serve the Lord by sharing our time, talent, and treasures."
Do not forget that true love sets no conditions; it does not calculate or complain, but simply loves." - St. Pope John Paul ll. God loves us. He gave His only Son for our sake and our salvation. God asks each one of us to be with him in this journey of 40 days of Lent. Whenever Lent arrives, our family usually plans a pilgrimage by visiting various churches to pray at the 14 stations of the cross. But due to the covid19 pandemic, we might do it virtually or at home. Another is by attending various online recollections and talks about lent. But our favorite is to watch religious movies with our son. We observed fasting and abstinence too during Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. There is much that we can do during Lent, but these are our simple acts of sacrifice for God as we connect this to the suffering of Jesus. For me, Lent is not about the sad moment. It is not only about the crucifixion and the death of Jesus but it is even more about the resurrection. There is a happy ending to every betrayal and persecution. Christ's resurrection gives joy to us because we are reminded of His unfailing love and mercy. By His love, we are saved and redeemed. We should connect more to God in our lives because He is our heavenly Father. He fixes our brokenness in life and accepts us whatever we did in the past. Now the question is, what can we do for God this Lent? The answer is in your hands. Let us make our Lent holy! May God bless you and your family always.Product/s recommended for lent-St. Therese of Lisieux Cross Enamel Pin - Mother Teresa Keychain -Team Jesus Enamel pin - Pray Enamel pin