The season of Lent has begun, and we’re encouraged to stop in our tracks, see where we might have strayed, and with God’s grace start again.
The Church’s traditional Lenten practices are prayer, fasting and almsgiving. Undertaken for the love of Christ, they can help us to abandon our self-sufficiency, escape the insanity of hoarding, and help us remember the enforced fasting of many throughout our world.
This year, the world is overshadowed with the invasion of the Ukraine. Many people have already been killed, many more are suffering, homeless and at a loss to know what to do for the best. We can do no better than placing the people of that country at the heart of our prayer, while we also consider other ways of being of assistance.
Pope Francis, in his Lenten Message this year, says: Each year during Lent we are reminded that “goodness, together with love, justice and solidarity, are not achieved once and for all; they have to be realized each day” (Fratelli tutti #11). Let us ask God to give us the patient perseverance of the farmer (cf. Jas 5:7), and to persevere in doing good, one step at a time. If we fall, let us stretch out our hand to the Father, who always lifts us up. If we are lost, if we are misled by the enticements of the evil one, let us not hesitate to return to God, who “is generous in forgiving” (#3)
May we, in our small way, have the patient perseverance of the farmer and to persevere in doing good, one step at a time. May our Lenten preparation bring forth fruit at Easter, and may the world know peace.
Mgr Philip Moger