I invite you, therefore, in the name of the Church, into the observance of a holy Lent.
Many of us accepted that invitation. Perhaps we’ve added extra time of prayer and contemplation. Maybe we’ve denied ourselves some particular food we enjoy or included a Lenten study with our Church to our schedules. Some of us may have given more attention to the words of the Confession of Sin.
Yes, we are observing a holy Lent.
But let’s not forget why.
We aren’t observing a holy Lent to win a special award or to feel superior to those who may not be quite so observant. God does not love us more because we gave up chocolate or added a routine of praying for ten minutes each day. We are observing a holy Lent to prepare ourselves.
Much like running a marathon, by which we prepare not by running the entire marathon over and over, day in and day out, until the big day, but by running smaller distances and building up to the grand race, we prepare for the grand celebration of Easter day by day, bit by bit, prayer by prayer.
With each day of Lent, we prepare ourselves to welcome the great moment of Resurrection in Easter. Events this fabulous call us to preparation. We kneel on Sundays in confession and prayer to stand around the Holy Fire and hear the words of the of mystery, of joy, of love:
Dear friends in Christ: On this most holy night, in which our
Lord Jesus passed over from death to life, the Church invites
her members, dispersed throughout the world, to gather in
vigil and prayer.
We are not there yet; we are still preparing. But lift your eyes slightly. See the hope. See the promise. See the smallest fragments of the fabulous miracle that is to come.