Lent: A Time for ‘Uncommon Courage’
Lent begins this week on Wednesday — Ash Wednesday — a 40-day journey we walk with Jesus and his apostles as we seek to grow into deeper faithfulness to the God who loves without cost. While life’s questions may seem overwhelming to us this Lent, they also can lead us to a new understanding of life and faith. Upon reflection we may find that the Lenten days reveal ever more clearly where God may be calling us.
“God’s love is experienced in us as an action of grace to which we personally respond.”“I Am the Way,” Loretto Constitutions, #54
The Gospel for Sunday of the first week of Lent reminds us that “this is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of God is at hand.” How can we embed this age-old message into our everyday practice? Spend some time with Sunday’s first reading (Genesis 9:8-15) considering God’s faithfulness.
Valentine’s Day is a perfect day to begin to think about Lent, about those we love and those who love us. It is a good day to ask ourselves, as the philosopher Pema Chadron did, “How did I get so lucky to have my heart awakened to others and their suffering.” We can pray this Lent to have our hearts awakened to a heart filled with love, filled with prayer, filled with thoughts of those who suffer from the coronavirus and other challenges. We can send Valentines to those we love, to surprise someone who needs to hear from us and of course, to God. Don’t be surprised as to what you get in return.
“Your ways, O God, are love and truth to those who keep your covenant.”Psalm 25
This Lent, Loretto members will be reading, praying and reflecting on the writings of Benedictine Joan Chittister from her book, “The Time Is Now: A Call to Uncommon Courage.” (Convergent Books, Penguin Random House. New York, 2019) The book is available to order here.
We are happy to share with you Loretto’s “Lenten Reflections” companion guide, which includes Loretto reflections, discussion points and action items based on Joan’s scriptural insights and narratives.
“Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.”Martin Luther King Jr.