.A great blessing of my life has been to have served at the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes in France for 3 years. I returned to reside in the U.S. at the beginning of last year – I’m sure Mother Mary wanted to bring me home during COVID!
Years ago, it fell to me to clean out our family home. Anyone who has performed this chore knows that it can be a painstaking task. It took longer than anticipated, actually, longer than I wanted it to take.
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Today’s Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter is an occasion to give thanks for the office conferred on our saint and passed to his successors. Such a movement of gratitude leads us, naturally, to give thanks for the role of this office in safeguarding the deposit of faith and for the Church commissioned with communicating this faith to the ends of the earth.
Penitence is really about conversion. We are turning towards the Lord and away from what is harmful and sinful. The three disciplines of Lent - fasting, almsgiving, and prayer - are to help us leave behind what separates us from God.
“It’s Ash Wednesday. It’s cold. It’s February, but Ash Wednesday is the beginning of the great season of Lent. It’s climbing a mountain from this point all the way to the mountaintop at Easter. In order to get there, what do you need … well, we need to fast, pray, give alms … and I would say, we need GRIT as well …”