Live Lent in Love

by Kathleen Ryan, SND on February 25, 2014

in Blogs

In our Christian tradition Easter is a time of hope, light and new life breaking through despair, darkness and death.  Lent calls us to enter into the suffering, dying and rising of Christ.  When we hear on Holy Saturday night the Easter proclamation that “Christ is Risen!” we are hearing the guarantee of our liberation.  “By His Cross and Resurrection, He has set us free.”  The triumph of Jesus the Risen Lord empowers us to live our life confident in faith, secure in hope and united in love with each other and all creation.

Lent is that time set aside by the Church for growth and conversion, challenge and healing, praying and serving our broken world and struggling humanity.  We can’t open a newspaper or listen to the news without begin keenly aware of the immense need for healing in our culture around the multidimensional challenge of violence.  Our neighborhoods and communities are increasingly experiencing the violence caused by guns, heroin, gangs, lack of education.  The entertainment media are saturated with violence.  Violence tests are Christian faith as much today as it did at Calvary.  We recognize in these senseless actions the eroding respect for the sacredness of all life.

We as Catholic Christians know another way–the way of love.

Lent calls us to continue and expand our efforts to be a compassionate, loving presence in the world.  Words like welcoming, comforting, guiding and nurturing need to be in our adult vocabulary and result in actions that affirm the life and dignity of the other.   We need to be visible signs that we are the  “blessed meek, the blessed peacemaker, the blessed one who hunger and thirst for justice, and like Jesus, spend our Lent “going about doing good.”  This Lent let our goal be: “Where there is hatred, let me sow love.  Where there is injury, let me  pardon.”

Each day during lent may we recall that  ” it is in giving that we receive.”   Let us walk this lent in love so that we will be on Easter Sunday, as the scriptures promise, born again to resurrected life.

Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace;
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is error, truth;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
And where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master, Grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console;
To be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.


{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Lisa Novak February 26, 2014 at 9:49 am

Thank you for thinking NEW LIFE in your reflection, Kathleen. This gives me a positive take on Lent and great hope that soon it will be SPRING!


mary james February 26, 2014 at 10:54 am

Kathy–thanks so much for a beautiful reminder for
Lent–and the reminder of St. Francis’ prayer–one
of my favorites. It gave me an idea for my “Lenten
journey” God bless!


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