So this is Christmas.
And what have you done ?
Another year over
and a new one just begun.
No, it is not Christmas. But it is Shrove Tuesday. Pancake Day. Fat Tuesday. The day before the start of Lent.
Lent always seems to creep up on me, with its scariness and its joy. We seem to have only just finished Christmastide, to have barely settled into Ordinary Time. And then it is Lent.
Scary. Scary when I sense the rapid passing of time. Scary because I take the time to recollect, to do penance, to challenge – me. This is hard.
Joyful because the extra prayers and spiritual reading and devotions like the Stations of the Cross make me feel closer to God, build my faith.
On and off, all day, I’ve thought, with a surprised start each time, Oh, yes, this is Lent. Tomorrow. Ash Wednesday. And then the lyrics of John Lennon’s song come to my mind.
And so this is Lent..
…and what will I do?…
Another season over…
I made pikelets today for French class and for work meetings . Pikelets = mini pancakes..And we devoured pancakes with ice cream and fruit (and vodka cruisers for adults) after Mass tonight. With a gathering of candles on the table, and Singstar, to celebrate Pancake Day.
We also created a Lenten centrepiece, for our dining table liturgical year strewing. Something I thought of last night, lying awake, not sleeping…A quiet reminder..Unspoken words….A violet circle ( violet – Lent; circle – crown – crown of thorns) with the words mea culpa in silver cardboard ( my fault – sorrow for sins) and our violet Lenten candle in the middle. To be swapped for a rose candle on Laetare Sunday.
May every family and Christian community use well this time of Lent, therefore, in order to cast aside all that distracts the spirit and grow in whatever nourishes the soul, moving it to love of God and neighbor. I am thinking especially of a greater commitment to prayer, lectio divina, recourse to the Sacrament of Reconciliation and active participation in the Eucharist, especially the Holy Sunday Mass. With this interior disposition, let us enter the penitential spirit of Lent. May the Blessed Virgin Mary, Causa nostrae laetitiae, accompany and support us in the effort to free our heart from slavery to sin, making it evermore a “living tabernacle of God.” With these wishes, while assuring every believer and ecclesial community of my prayer for a fruitful Lenten journey, I cordially impart to all of you my Apostolic Blessing Pope Benedict’s Lenten message