Thursday, February 9, 2012

This Year's Lenten Plans


In less than two weeks, our favorite liturgical season will be upon us.  What we will do this year to make our Lenten journey a spiritually profitable one for ourselves and our families?

For one thing, I will not be blogging or reading blogs on Fridays.  I would encourage others to do the same.

Today, a Douay-Rheims edition of the New Testament with a complete set of Psalms arrived in the mail from the friars at Mystic Monk Coffee.  It's a flexible cover edition small enough to tuck inside my handbag.  I don't think I read Scripture enough so I will make a sincere effort this Lent to devote a little time each day to that devotion.  I hope to pray the Psalms more often as well.

As is my routine during Lent, I will try to make the Stations of the Cross each Friday at my own parish, and perhaps on other days during the week if they are offered at other nearby churches.  And I will make a more concerted effort to get some family members other than faithful Rebecca to go with me.

I took the day off on Ash Wednesday.  I like to begin the day with early morning Mass at my own parish, followed by Adoration and hopefully confession later in the day.   Then I will take Matthew to a prayer service at our parish later in the day when he gets home from school.

So far I know of only one retreat for Lent, the silent retreat at the Carmel that I mentioned a few weeks ago.  In lieu of an additional retreat, I will try to spend more time in Adoration, perhaps combined with fasting before-hand.  Who knows what soul might be saved from this effort?  Maybe my own!

The Royal Way of the Cross by Francois Fenelon is one of my favorite picks for Lenten reading.  Does anyone have any others to suggest?  I am a bit of a creature of habit whereby with both spiritual books as well as fiction, I like to go back to that with which I'm familiar, rather than venturing out and trying something new, so I'd like to get out of my comfort zone a bit with something different.

I know some people consider abstaining from certain foods or treats a juvenile way to observe Lent, but I think it's a good thing if you combine it with spiritual practices.  God give me the strength to give up Pepsi for Lent (and  help my poor family during the withdrawal period!).




11 comments:

  1. I also plan to go to the retreat! yayy!

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    1. Let me know if you need a ride. I don't think I'm working this retreat like I did in December. Double Yay!
      Joyce

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  2. Blog free Fridays are a marvelous idea. Thank you for for it. I think I shall join you.
    Blessings!

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  3. Joyce, I always look forward to Lent too. I really need the opportunity for self-discipline that it offers.

    You have some wonderful plans for this holy season. I haven't even thought about it yet.

    The Tuesday before Ash Wednesday is the Feast of the Holy Face of Jesus, a time to make reparation for the sins of Mardi Gras on that day. Just thought I would share that.

    Thanks for all the great suggestions about Lent. As for books, I keep planning to read Part II of Jesus of Nazareth by Pope Benedict. Maybe I'll tackle it this Lent.

    Love to you Joyce,
    Patricia
    PS I finally got a moment to respond to your beautiful comment to me. Thank you.

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    1. oh, I'll have to go take a look. And thanks for the reading suggestion, I've heard so much about the books that I really must read them myself.
      Love to you too
      Joyce

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  4. I am looking forward to this Lent myself. I must be growing in holiness, though I know it's not by much. In addition to my usual giving up of alcoholic beverages, I'm going to try to pass on one meal a day (most likely lunch) as often as possible. Not sure I can do it every day. For reading I plan to read The Confessions of St. Augustine. I've had that on my bookshelf to read for the last couple of years. I'm tempted on the blog free Fridays, but I don't know. If I didn't blog I'd probably watch TV and that's worse.

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  5. Oh I have question, and this may sound dumb. But what is the significance of the cloak over the cross during Lent? I don't think anyone has ever explained that to me.

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  6. LOL Manny I don't think anyone ever explained it to me either, but this is what I think. During Easter, you will often see a wooden cross like this one with a white cloth draped over it, signifying that the Risen Lord has overcome death and the agony of the cross. During Lent, you will often see a purple cloth instead since purple is the color of penitence and because the season culminates with the Passion of Christ.

    Make sense? If it doesn't, you could do a little research and then come back and tell me if I was even close :)
    Thanks for the comment and the question
    Joyce

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  7. Joyce, I'm back to say that I'm on board with no blogging Fridays during Lent. I hope others accept your invitation to join in. I will try to spend that extra time in spiritual reading... and extra adoration time when possible...and praying for my fellow bloggers.

    See what you started..... : )

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    1. Patricia, wonderful, get the word out so others may join us.
      Blessings
      Joyce

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