Tag Archives: Lent

Prayer in Lent

Prayer is one of the three principal focuses of our Lenten discipline, along with fasting and almsgiving. In this meditation we consider how:

  • Christ himself gives us an example of fervent and assiduous prayer
  • Prayer unites us with Christ and helps us become true friends with him
  • Prayer can take four forms
  • Prayer requires effort
  • We can improve our prayer life in Lent in a number of ways

Living Lent well

 

Our Lord fasted and prayed for forty days before beginning his public life of preaching the Gospel. In Lent we accompany him in prayer, fasting and almsgiving to prepare for the great feast of Easter. In this meditation we consider how:

  • Inspired by Christ’s example, our prayer and fasting will help us overcome the many temptations we face in life.
  • When we live Lent well, we grow in self-mastery and experience the joy of the resurrection every day.
  • Lent spurs us on to new growth in the spiritual life and prepares us for our final meeting with Our Lord.
  • Texts of Pope Francis and St Peter Chrysologus show us the importance and unity of prayer, fasting and almsgiving.
  • There are many practical ways of living each of these aspects of Lent.

Fasting in Lent

Fasting is one of the three focuses of Lent, along with prayer and almsgiving. But how much fasting should we do? The Church asks very little: only to fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. In this meditation we pray about this important topic, considering:

  • How much Our Lord suffered for us and how we should respond with generosity
  • The history of fasting in Lent, from the early centuries to the present
  • Statements from Pope St John Paul II on generosity in fasting
  • Words of St Francis de Sales on the spirit of fasting
  • Practical ways we can live fasting in Lent

Lent, a springtime in the spiritual life

 

 

 

To prepare for his public life, Our Lord spent forty days in prayer and fasting. This is the origin of the forty days of Lent in preparation for Easter, to be spent in prayer, fasting and almsgiving. In this meditation we consider how:

  • After forty days in the desert Christ rejected the temptations of Satan, showing us how we too can reject temptations to sin.
  • The word “Lent” comes from the Anglo-Saxon word “Lencten”, meaning “springtime”, and if we live Lent well we will have a springtime of new life in our soul.
  • To live Lent well we should strive to do something specific in the traditional areas of prayer, fasting  and almsgiving.

Lent with Pope Francis

In Lent we accompany Our Lord in his forty days of prayer and fasting in the desert before beginning his public life and in carrying the cross to Calvary before the Resurrection. In his Lenten Message for 2018 Pope Francis quotes Our Lord saying that false prophets would appear and the love of many would grow cold. In this meditation we consider how:

  • The love of many in our own generation has grown cold and we too may have grown cold in some aspects
  • Many have succumbed to the message of the false prophets of our own day, and we too may be tempted to follow them
  •  We can make resolutions to live Lent well in the three areas of prayer, fasting and almsgiving.

Lent in the Year of Mercy

lent-prayer-fasting-giving-works-of-love

Now that we are in Lent in this Jubilee Year of Mercy, we pray in this meditation about how to live Lent well so as to derive the maximum benefit from this great season of grace.  We will consider:

  • the importance of Lent
  • the meaning of Lent and especially how we might live the three main areas of
  • Prayer
  • Fasting
  • Almsgiving

Meditation “The joy of mortification”

We don’t usually look on self-denial or mortification as bringing us joy, but it does – both here and hereafter. In this meditation we consider:

  • Why a disciple of Jesus Christ should live self-denial
  • How mortification is essential for holiness
  • Eight benefits of mortification
  • How we can find areas for mortification in our spiritual life, in the fulfillment of our duties and in kindness towards others
  • How we can accept in a spirit of penance the crosses life brings
  • How those who live self-denial always find joy