Laudetur Jesus Christus!
Gelobt sei Jesus Christus!
Praised be Jesus Christ!
I would like to thank everyone for your support of the Catholic Ministries Appeal. I know that the Church so often asks for money, but it unfortunately takes a lot of money to carry on with the mission that Christ has left us. So I thank you for your patience and your generosity. Without you, the Gospel would go un-preached and the Sacraments un-administered.
In a short while we will be into our Lenten observance. It seems like Christmas was just last week. As we go through this last week and a half before Lent, I encourage everyone to start thinking about what you will do during Lent. I would kindly prod that you do your best to not simply give up something superficial. Sure, giving up chocolate certainly has a benefit and teaches us self-restraint. Small penances like that are very beneficial. However, how much more beneficial to you would it be to perhaps focus on some defect in your personality and truly work at it?
How much more would you get out of Lent if you sought to combat just one habitual sin and work to never commit it again? Doing something during Lent that will have lasting effects long after Easter is worth far more to the soul.
Reflect upon the three things that Lent in particular calls to mind when it comes to penance – prayer, fasting, and almsgiving. In addition to the chocolate and television, certainly do your best to add in more prayer and look for ways to care for those less fortunate than us. If we make it our goal in Lent to simply survive until Easter, that is as far as our Lenten observance we will get us. But if we make it our goal to truly improve the state of our souls, then Easter will not be the conclusion, but rather the beginning of the great gift that God seeks to give us, sainthood. I ask that you ponder these things until Ash Wednesday (February 18) so that you are well prepared for this great fasting season.
Have a blessed week ahead!