FOURTH SUNDAY OF LENT
We gather together at our Sunday or in some cases at our daily mass as God’s holy people. As you know this Sunday is the fourth Sunday in Lent it is also Mothers Day and we thank all our mothers for their goodness to us over the last year and we pray for all those who have lost their mothers since this time last year. Also for all those who are Irish or of Irish decent I wish you all a Happy St. Patricks Day.
We pause at this point of our Lenten Journey to reflect on the journey of spiritual renewal we are undertaking. Lent is the penitential journey of reflection and renewal a journey that will bring us to the celebration of the death of Jesus at holy Week and his resurrection on Easter Sunday. The threefold practice of fasting, alms giving and prayer are more visible during Lent than at any other time of the year. Fasting and penitential acts clarify the mind and they reveal to us the limitations on our liberty which self-indulgence imposes. In the Catholic tradition, I am a Catholic, there are now only 2 days of fast & abstinence Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. Having said that I would encourage those who are able to try and undertake these 2 fast days. Apart from these two particular days we are asked to make every Friday a day when we undertake some sort of fasting.
Almsgiving through the many Christian organizations of which Trocaire is our primary one with their annual Lenten campaign makes us more available to others in a brotherly sharing of our resources unhampered by the divisions and artificialness of social life. Prayer at all times and in a special way in Lent makes us more open to God and more aware of that fundamental dependence of all creation on his word. What images and memories does the word “Lent” bring to your mind? Are they mostly positive, negative, or somewhere in between? I always remember liking the Holy Week ceremonies more than the 40 days leading up to them. I liked them because of the actual ceremony and I really like them now because I understand their spiritual meaning more. The season of Lent is not a time for rejoicing, in its starkness it is more of a time for Spiritual preparation for the events of Holy Week & Easter. Lent offers all of us the opportunity to seriously examine and enrich our commitment to Christ and his church. But this does not mean we have to walk around with sad expressions on our faces it was once said by A saint “May Heaven deliver us from sour-faced people!”
There are so many means available to us to realize the purpose of Lent, the celebration of the sacraments, especially Sunday and daily Mass, prayer and the sharing of our goods with others, fasting and abstaining from various things are examples of some of the things that we might do to have a good Lent. So then during Holy Week we rededicate ourselves as members of the church as we recall our Lord’s death on Good Friday and victory over death in the Resurrection on Easter Sunday. On Ash Wednesday we began by placing the ashes on our foreheads and by undertaking our Lenten observances .we made a commitment to become more credible witnesses to God’s love for humanity in this season of renewal and beyond it into our daily lives and living right through this year.
you call us to bring your joy to the world.
You invite us to be your Body on earth the Church,
Your mission for us is to reach out to the fearful and weak! You empower us to reveal your presence to a weary world. You enthuse us to enter deeper into a life assured of resurrection. Be with us, as we continue our pilgrim journey Guide our footsteps with the light of faith, that we may walk in your ways during this Holy season of Renewal