Dear Parishioners – 2.21.21
Pope Francis in his Lenten message this year refers to Lent as a “Time for Renewing Faith, Hope and Love.” We, as disciples of the Lord, are called to “share in his mission for the salvation of the world.” How to do this? The pope recommends that “during this season of conversion, let us renew our faith, draw from the living water of hope, and receive with open hearts the love of God.”
Fasting, prayer and giving alms are the traditional activities during Lent, and Pope Francis speaks about each. In denying ourselves by fasting, we stand in solidarity with the poor and rediscover that it is God who fulfills us.
Through prayer we open ourselves to God’s truth and self, inviting God to “make his dwelling” within us and show us his great love. Alms giving is not simply sharing our resources with those less fortunate, but also can be construed as offering hope and forgiveness to others. By simply being kind to one another, being “willing to set everything else aside in order to show interest, to give the gift of a smile, to speak a word of encouragement, to listen amid general indifference,” can give comfort to another.
The pope concludes his message with these words: “Dear brothers and sisters, every moment of our lives is a time for believing, hoping and loving. The call to experience Lent as a journey of conversion, prayer and sharing of our goods, helps us as communities and as individuals to revive the faith that comes from the living Christ, the hope inspired by the breath of the Holy Spirit and the love flowing from the merciful heart of the Father.
These are powerful words, and they can inspire us to do our part this Lent to renew our spirits and those of others in our path, as we work to prepare the way for the glorious celebration of the Resurrection!