Our annual Lenten journey begins this week with Ash Wednesday, the day we begin our climb to the holy mountain of Easter. The Lenten season has two primary purposes; it is a time to prepare both catechumens and the faithful to celebrate the paschal mystery during the Easter Triduum (Holy Thursday, Good Friday and the Easter Vigil/Sunday). Lent begins with Ash Wednesday and ends at the beginning of the Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday.
The scripture readings for the Lenten Masses have been chosen in relation to the themes of baptismal renewal and penance. The gospels and readings from the Hebrew Scriptures have been selected for their mutual relationship. During the first three and half weeks of Lent, the message is a call to a life of Gospel conversion. They speak of beginning anew, of fasting, prayer and almsgiving; of conversion; of mutual forgiveness, of hardness of heart; and a call to holiness. The readings for the second half of Lent turn our attention from ourselves to Christ, meant to help us understand the mystery of Jesus Christ. The scriptures present Christ as the healer and life giver, as the one who gives life through his confrontation with death and gathers the scattered children of God. The two scriptural themes of Lent fit together with the Spirit of Lent in many ways, one of which is a challenge to any self-deceit about the quality of our lives as disciples of Jesus. As we reflect on these general scriptural themes, we need to be conscious of our need for conversion and salvation; otherwise we may not get the message that may be intended for us.
A major part of any parish’s Lenten season is the RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults) and RCIC (Rite of Christian Initiation for Children). This year we have three adults in the RCIA. The members of the RCIA and RCIC should serve as powerful reminders to those of us who are fully initiated of our responsibilities as baptized people. Please keep our friends in your prayers as they continue their preparation.
During the season of Lent and the Easter Triduum there are two days of fast and abstinence, Ash Wednesday and Good Friday, and every Friday is a day of abstinence from meat. Just as a side note, abstinence (in this context) means you should avoid eating meat; it does not mean that you must eat fish.
At Transfiguration we will have a number of opportunities to help us during our Lenten journey. The details of these opportunities and others will be in the Bulletin and on our website transfigurationpittsford.org opportunities include:
- Evening Prayer – Each Monday during Lent.
- Global Solidarity Alms Giving for El Salvador – all of Lent
- We usually have no donuts at Coffee hour but we have no coffee for now due to Covid!
- Mendon/Pittsford Lenten Retreat – Tuesday, March 2 and 9. Dr. Damian Zynda and Fr. Bob Kennedy are our presenters.
- Dr. Joe Kelly – Thursday, March 18 with prayer and discussion in honor of the Pope’s declaration for 2021 being the Year of St. Joseph. During the Easter Season. Getting to Know You: Biblical Insights for Developing a Deeper Relationship with God.
- Sacrament of Reconciliation anytime during Lent, call Fr. Mike for an appointment or come at 3:30 PM on Saturday.
- First Eucharist preparation – Throughout Lent our young parishioners will be preparing to receive Eucharist for the first time, please keep them in your prayers.
Watch the Bulletin and web site for more Lenten opportunities.
As we begin another Lenten season let us pray for each other that we may come closer to the God who created and cares for us.
Please continue to pray for peace in our world!
In peace and courage,