Preparation for Lent
Mar 1, 2014
Lent and Roman Catholics Beginning Our Penitential Period
“Remember You Are Dust and Unto Dust You Shall Return”
Penitential practice is meant to remind us of our humble position in the world. In the Old Testament God commands the Israelites to put ashes on their heads as a sign of penance. A public penance, a public proclamation that they were sinners.
In today’s world it is very easy to be a sinner, to offend God through venial or mortal sin. The virtue of humility loses out to the sin of pride – pride in our possessions, position or money. The reality though is that we are only in this world for a very brief time. Dust we are and dust we shall return.
Lent is the Season to call upon God’s mercy. To call out for an infinite conversion. Time to change our lives through practicing penance and the traditions of penance such as:
PRAYER – Attending Holy Mass, (even daily), saying the Stations of the Cross and meditating on the Passion and Death of Jesus Christ, praying the Sorrowful mysteries of the Rosary daily.
FASTING – not telling anyone, no gaining praises, making it a true sacrifice – something that is truly difficult for you to maintain.
ALMS GIVING (Donating) – this lays treasures in heaven. Material goods are given for good works and charity with no recognition or physical reward.
The greatest form of penance is the SACRAMENT OF PENANCE (CONFESSION). It brings grace to the soul. Where our hearts have been torn by sin, penance heals the heart.
Penance brings an internal conversion, a change of heart that turns us away from the sins we often commit. Our sins are forgiven. We should make frequent use of the Sacrament of Penance especially during lent.
May we all persevere these forty days of lent offering penance, humility and contrition for our sins.