I was raised Catholic, BP was not.
We married in a Catholic church.
We attended a wonderful Methodist church until BP converted to Catholicsm 2 years ago.
Being Catholic is a big part of who we are.
Lent starts today, Ash Wednesday, and continues until Easter Sunday.
The homily our priest gave Sunday morning was fabulous, focusing on how to grow closer to Jesus during Lent.
He suggested some things to do during this holy time:
1. Try to make it to daily Mass or at least more often than Sunday morning. Obviously, attending Mass applies to Catholics. But praying and immersing yourself in the Word more than usual extends to all Christians.
2. Not only fast on Fridays, but give up a pleasure such as dessert, wine, beer, soda pop, etc. In addition to not eating meat on Fridays, I refrain from sweets each Lent. It always proves to be a challenge for me. Always. I went out with a bang this year, feasting on a dee-lish cookies and cream milkshake from Chick-fil-A. hehehe
3. Attend Stations of the Cross on Fridays. This is something we are going to try to do this year. It’s a humbling experience and definitely brings you closer to Jesus and the trials he went through.
4. Watch less TV.
5. Use the computer/cell phone/internet less or not at all.
6. Live simply and frugally. Give what you normally would have spent to charity. I am happy to say this is one we are doing already through couponing. I donate a lot of surplus items in my pantry to our local community ministry. Our priest also suggested donating the items or money to your local Catholic Social Services.
7. Attend the penance service for forgiveness of your sins and confess on a regular basis. Reconciliation or confession is a Catholic sacrament where one confesses their sins to a priest. Can you ask forgiveness in your own prayers without a priest? Sure. But the sacrament absolves you from your sins and leaves you with a feeling of the world lifted off your shoulders. This is one sacrament I need to do more often.
There were a few more he mentioned, but these were the ones that jumped out at me.
How are you going to make Lent more meaningful?