This week sees us beginning the season of Lent with Ash Wednesday
on 17th February. It is hard to take in that we are soon to be back in
Lent again, for this time last year we were in the early days of the
Pandemic. It has been a strange year with few expecting this to last so
long. Some told us it would all be over by Easter however they did not
tell us in which year!
We have had many months in which to reflect, many have found the first
lockdown was quite creative for reassessing their priorities and the
direction of their lives. Many have had this forced upon them by furlough
or becoming unemployed or sickness or by the death of a loved one. This
current lockdown has been a lot more difficult for most of us because of
the cold and the shorter days, with many more people contracting Covid
and the greater number of deaths. Perhaps we feel that we do not need
Lent this year.
Lent prepares us for that great story of our faith: that Jesus was
willing to enter into the depths of suffering and to experience death
itself for us. "Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay
down his life for his friends." We are his friends for he has done
all this for us. Our Lent journey is to remind ourselves that we have a
friend in God. In Jesus we see that he is with us in our suffering and
brokenness. The things we take on during Lent to prepare ourselves for
Holy Week and Easter are to help us understand the cost of our salvation.
Our confession of sins and penances remind us that we are sinners yet
redeemed and forgiven. Our Almsgiving is a sign of our thanksgiving for
all that we have been given. Our bible study helps us hear again the
story of our redemption and enter into its depths. Our prayer and
attendance at the sacraments bring us closer to the God who loves us,
gives himself to us and is our friend.
Please use Lent as fully as possible. We will be open for public worship
with a full programme of the sacraments and Lenten devotions. Please see
the list of special services and other events. There are other resources
that can be used at home and we will continue to live-stream the masses
My prayer is that during Lent we will all deepen our relationship with
the God who loves us, walks with us in daily lives in our times of
suffering and of joy and we will all discover he is truly our friend.