2023 LENTEN JOURNEYFeb 22, 2023 | Story by: CLCP Formation Team | Lent, Ash Wednesday, CLCP Vacation with the Lord
We are called to fast in the ways the prophets describe- to fast from injustice and insensitivity to the poor and the suffering and needy around us; to fast from selfishness and indulgence; to fast from concentration on our own sinfulness and to turn toward others,, as God always turns toward us and hears our cry in our need.
Let's Pause and Ponder:
We need to be in touch with what can transform us, what makes us confront new questions, what stretches our commitment and identity. It is that kind of focus that should characterise Lent. Where am I growing? Where are there questions in my life? Where am I being called to something deeper - something which, precisely as such, I cannot get my head round? What is my equivalent of the desert, of Jesus's temptations? How can I enter into that place fully, freely, generously?
Day 2 (Thursday After Ash Wednesday)
What we do reveals our God. By our choices, we will bring forth life or court death and destruction. The second day of lent reminds us that we have choices to make: Choose life and blessing or choose death and cursing.
Let's Pause and Ponder:
1) How am I called to bring forth life in myself and in others?
2) What specific choices my community has made that resulted in an experience of life/death? How did we deal with it as a community?
3) What does it mean personally to me to "lose myself?"
Day 3 (Friday After Ash Wednesday)
Lent is the story of liberation from oppression and the yoke that weighs down human beings, making them beasts of burden, expendable workers, and sources of endless profit. This is what our God wants stopped. This is what God wants us to abstain from and fast wholeheartedly.
Let's Pause and Ponder:
1) In what way does my fasting brings about the reign of God here on earth? I clarify it before God in prayer
Day 4 (Saturday After Ash Wednesday)
"Lent is only Christian if it is positive. " -Philip Endean, SJ
God's love liberates us, a love that seeks what will make us happy even if that love is unrequited most of the time.
Let us reflect on the song 'Paubaya' and sense how we have been responding to God's love for us.
"Lent is a time of grace to the extent that we listen to Christ as He speaks to us... Listening to Christ often takes place in listening to our brothers and sisters..." -Pope Francis, Lenten Message 2023
THE CHRIST LIFE: THE MESSAGE
He had been given too much reading worldly books of fiction and knight-errantry and feeling well enough to read he asked for some of these books to help while away the time. In that house, however, they could find none of those he was accustomed to read, and so they gave him a Life of Christ and a book of the Lives of the Saints.
By the frequent reading of this books he conceived some affection for what he found there narrated. Pausing in his reading, he gave himself up to thinking over what he had read. (St. Ignatius'Own Story, 8. Translated by William Young, SJ)
Prayer: Dear Lord, let Ignatius be my model when I read or hear the Gospel story of Jesus and his life. Help me to read slowly, to pause and reflect, and to appreciate gratefully what Jesus has done for me and the life he has given me. Amen.
I will jot down briefly an incident/s in the life of Jesus that really moved me. I will describe why I find them so moving, then I will say a short prayer of thanks to Jesus.
"It was too easy to die for what was good or beautiful, for home or children or a civilization - it needed a God to die for the half-hearted and the corrupt." -Graham Greene
"The saint and sinner inside us are not separate entities. Rather the saint in us is not only our true self, it's our only self. The sinner in us is not a separate person or a separate moral force doing perpetual battle with the saint, it's simply the wounded part of the saint, that part of the saint that's been cursed and never properly blessed. "
-Ronald Rolheiser, OMI
"Sometimes in our lives, tears are the lenses we need to see Jesus."
"You do not yet see God, but by loving your neighbor, you gain the sight of God." -St. Augustine
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