Lent is a privileged time to walk in the experience of the Paschal mystery of Christ. Lent has a baptismal, penitential and, therefore, conversion character.
- Baptismal because we are immersed in the mystery of Christ to participate in the life of God
- Penitential because the fullness of God’s life we have not lived because of our sin, therefore, we are invited to renounce selfishness, our indifference and our comfort so that we can die to the old man and we can be reborn as new men in Christ.
- The fruit of our Conversion will be the authentic witness of being witnesses of Christ, of his resurrection and of his victory over sin and death. Living in the fullness of charity.
Lent includes the 40 days from Ash Wednesday to Holy Thursday, in memory of the forty years that the people of Israel lived in the desert, the forty days of fasting and prayer of Elijah on Mount Horeb and the forty days of fasting of Jesus in the desert.
First Sunday in Lent – Jesus in the Desert and Temptations
Our “discipline” has begun. As disciples of Jesus, we follow Him as he goes into the desert to face the temptaons from the devil in this earthly life. He is our model and our source of strength, and through the gi s of the Holy Spirit and Our Father, who created each one of us in His image, we strive this Lent to respond to sin as Jesus did. We become disciplined to overcome anything in our lives that’s from the devil and keeps us apart from Jesus. We do this through prayer, fasng and almsgiving.
Reflect on Jesus’ response to each temptation in light of our Penitential Practices
On Ash Wednesday, we begin Lent with the imposition of the ashes on our foreheads, committing us to live our faith through the convoking and the effort to shape our life with Christ as his disciples, the children of God and with members of the Body of Christ who is the Church.
It is our personal and community spiritual preparation to celebrate the mysteries of Christ that have given us the redemption of our lives. To receive the Ashes on this day is to commit myself to walk to the cross of Christ to live his resurrection.
“Blow the horn in Zion! Proclaim a fast, call an assembly! Gather the people, sanctify the congregation; Assemble the elderly; gather the children, even infants nursing at the breast; Let the bridegroom leave his room, and the bridal tent.” – Joel 2:15-16
Rooted in the Old Testament, the visible ashes on our foreheads are an outward sign of inward repentance and a demonstration of our commitment as a community to prepare for the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
In the Gospel Reading from Matthew 6:4, Jesus directs us toward our private, internal penitential practices of prayer, fasting and almsgiving.
“And your Father who sees in secret will repay you.”