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Lent approaches

Lent begins– February 14 Three Pillars of Lent Lent is about graced change. As with any lasting change we need to prepare ourselves. The three Pillars of Lent; Prayer, Fasting and Almsgiving provide us with opportunities to make changes in our lives which will carry us beyond the 40 days of Lent. Prayer turns us away from sin and draws us closer to God. Mass is the ultimate prayer so, a good Lenten practice is to attend daily Mass if possible. Praying the Rosary, reflecting on Scripture, visits before the Blessed Sacrament are just a few other prayer forms we may incorporate into our lives. Each Wednesday following the 12 noon Mass we will pray the Stations of the Cross, have Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament until 5:45 p.m. closing with Benediction and a light supper. These are just a few opportunities to make time in our lives for prayer.

Fasting is a discipline. A discipline to remove whatever threatens to become our idols, those things that we make more important than having God in our lives. Most of us think of fasting in connection with food, but it could also involve other activities such video games, TV, etc. Again, where do we spend our time to the exclusion of God.

Almsgiving reminds us that we are not here just for ourselves but are bonded in solidarity with others. Because of that solidarity, we have an obligation to one another, especially those in the greatest need. So we need to reflect on how do we acknowledge that bond and care for another. Perhaps participation in our annual support of Catholic Relief Service’s Rice Bowl collection, or assistance with St. Vincent DePaul or outreach services for individuals in need. In these weeks leading up to Lent let us all take time to reflect on disciplines which will aid us in turning toward God and away from sin.

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