……from your Pastor’s Desk
This Wednesday is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of the Holy Season of Lent – the time we change our lives for the better in preparation for the Most Holy of days – Easter.
This raises a yearly question for each of us. What should I give up for Lent? Or, perhaps, what should I take on? Preferably – both! To make a more well-informed decision, I think it best to first address WHY we should do either – or both.
The goal is two-fold: That we realize there is value in denying ourselves every gratification, especially immediate ones, and secondarily, to learn the spiritual value of sacrifice. In our world today of wanting everything – and wanting it NOW – this is a great lesson to learn, or re-learn as the case may be. Good things are both worth waiting for and worth working for.
It is up to each of you personally to determine how best to achieve this, but here are some ideas: Perhaps giving up or modifying something like the consumption of chocolate or sweets, or pizza, or the amount of time per day spent playing video games, or internet surfing, or excessive texting, tweeting or twittering, or just watching TV is a great sacrifice for you. Perhaps making daily Mass a few times a week or the Stations of the Cross on Fridays, or saying a daily rosary, or reading some of the Bible daily – or attending the Holy Hour on Thursdays – or being faithful to taking time to read the ‘Little Black Book’ of Lenten Mediations – any of which would involve some of your ‘free-time’ – would be a great sacrifice.
Again, it is up to you. What will teach you best the virtue of sacrifice? Pick something, pick even ONE thing and go with it. If you are not sure – ask God in prayer these next three days. You’ll know – BELIEVE me – you’ll know!
Remember – we add sacrifice to our lives not for its own sake, but to help us be more attuned to God and to those whose daily lives involve much sacrifice and suffering – the Body of Christ Crucified among us.
Regarding fasting – on the next page, there are the official Diocesan Regulations during Lent. If you follow these – regardless of age – you will find it most edifying.
From its earliest days the Church has urged the baptized to observe the three-fold discipline of fasting, almsgiving (charity), and prayer in preparation for the celebration of Easter. As you will hear there is something very special and specific that I want us together, as a parish to reach to. I strongly encourage your participation. During Lent the Church encourages attendance at daily Mass, selfimposed times of fasting, and giving generously to programs of sharing.
Please find below the times for Services on Ash Wednesday and also the Stations of the Cross.
With deepest sincerity -I wish you a Holy, meaningful, productive, and yes, Happy Lent.
Distribution of Ashes.
Ash Wednesday – February 26th
7:30am, ashes only, and 9am & 6:30pm, Mass and ashes
Stations of The Cross
Every Friday of Lent at 6:30pm in Church (March 13th only @ 3pm)