Lent 2017: A Journey Towards Inner Conversion

Lent posterOnce again that time of year is upon us with the beginning of Lent. As we move into this Lenten period, our world is rife with turmoil, violence, hatred, racism, and vindictiveness. Here, in the U.S. the recent election and its aftermath have left many dissatisfied at the deep divisions, distrust, and lack of respect. It is easy to become discouraged by much that is occurring in our world. 

A number of people approach Lent with the usual “What can I give up?” The question for us today should be: “How can I use this sacred season to make a positive difference in our world?” If one choses to give up something, what about giving up a negative attitude or focusing too much upon ourselves instead of upon others around us? Perhaps we can make this Lent one of being a sign and example of peace and unity. In our speech and actions each day, let us focus on respect for all, acceptance of the other, being a peaceful presence. Being a sign of peace and unity comes about as a result of an ever deepening prayer life, a prayer life which will create peace within our own hearts. God’s peace within us will then radiate outward to those around us and hopefully cause a ripple effect in the world. 

Lent posterPope Francis in his Lenten message calls us to conversion. “Lent is a new beginning, a path leading to the certain goal of Easter, Christ’s victory over death. This season urgently calls us to conversion. Christians are asked to return to God “with all their hearts”  (Joel 2:12), to refuse to settle for mediocrity and to grow in friendship with the Lord. Jesus is the faithful friend who never abandons us. Even when we stray, Jesus patiently awaits our return; by that patient expectation, he shows his readiness to forgive. Should we not try to do the same?

Thus, as we enter into this Lent let us pray with the psalmist each day:
Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and put a new and right spirit within me.      (Psalm 51:10)

May our 2017 Lenten Journey help us grow into our best selves as we make every effort possible to follow our Lord and God on the path of truth, justice and genuine love.

We invite you to share your thoughts and prayers with us by writing to us. We would be most happy to join you in prayer and in exchanging expectations for justice and the meaning of true conversion in our daily lives. You may respond to Sr. Marian St. Marie at marianst.marie@gmail.com


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