From The Desk Of… “Already?”

Yes, I just cursed audibly already. This one is going to be a tough one to break. At least I didn’t curse about breaking my promise of cursing! That would have been twice as bad. Instead, I punched my left palm with my right fist.

Progress.

But wait. Is cursing only the words they don’t allow in mainstream media? Then I would be ok. The word was ok by FCC standards. 

Just kidding. Chalk it up as a violation. But no more. 😉

Now back to work.

smallheap.jpg image by jmooser

A Pre-Lenten Reflection

http://icanhascheezburger.files.wordpress.com/2008/03/funny-pictures-cheezburger-lent-cat.jpg

Lent is my favorite part of the Catholic calendar. The obvious association is that of giving something up for those 40 days or so. It’s a wonderful tradition and it’s certainly the least we can do as Christians when it comes to what Christ endured. Lent is much deeper than the simple sacrificial action or non-action. It’s about how the Lenten sacrifice enriches your spiritual life and how you use this period of renewal n order to grow closer to God.

The sacrifices of fasting and not eating meat are a traditional component. We Catholics know ALL about traditions. I couldn’t tell you why we don’t eat meat on Fridays or why it’s customary to abstain from something desirable. It’s just tradition, and a harmless one at that. It fits in well.

Most of the religious aspects of modern Catholicism are themselves ancestral relics of action- customs which have survived persecution, fundamental resistance, and time. It’s a tradition I am proud to partake in, despite the conspiracies behind why Catholics started eating meat on Fridays. What does it matter? Perhaps in the past the reasons were tainted with hints of corruption. As we’ve learned in CCD or Catholic School, this part of our religious history is a regrettable part of history.

I just choose to celebrate it as part of our tradition as well. I mean, why not help further the stereotype, right?

This act of sacrifice in the season of Lent goes hand in hand with the ultimate sacrifice which occurs on Holy Thursday and Good Friday. Through our own seemingly insignificant sacrifices we symbolically emulate Christ’s path to the cross. (Oh, we LOVE symbols!) We give up something that is very integrated in our lives thus rendering us as lacking, and as time goes on, as wanting. Alas, our sacrifice is transformed into a nice euphemism for Lent’s entire purpose- the recognition of how much we as sinners are in ultimate need of Christ for salvation. He becomes your favorite carbonated beverage, your hours watching TV, or the plethora of other things we give up or pledge to do during Lent.

It should be our goal to recognize the season as such. Yet, an acceptance of the absence and needed presence of God in our lives leads to the realization that perhaps as an individual I haven’t steered the right course. Lent is most importantly about personal renewal.

Enter the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

If you don’t go any other time of the year, this is the period of time best to do it in. All souls get tarnished by the wear and tear of free will. You can’t make the right choice all of the time. Reconciliation is a humbling of the human ego through the admission of wrongdoing. What results is a renewal of resolve and spirituality. It’s about the effort.

Let’s look at it this way. Our Supreme Professor has made this test so hard that there is no one gets 100% in this class.  All we can do is go to office hours (multiple times in our lives through Sacrament and through prayer), admit we made wrong choices, and learn from our mistakes, leaving with an empowering resolve to not make the same mistakes. As long as we do our part, we can only hope he takes notice at our efforts and offers a large curve :).

I’ve always wondered why the Feast Of Christ the King, the Sunday before Advent, ushers in the new fiscal year of the liturgical calendar. For me, the season of Lent and Eastern are the essential definition of the Christian experience. Why wouldn’t renewal be synonymous with a new “year?” I digress.

Lenten Goals for 2009

  • No Coke or any similar products
  • Resume regular Mass attendance with ultimate participation in Communion after a good confession prior to Easter
  • No Drinking of Alcohol either
  • Being More Positive and No Cursing
  • Being more expressive and spending more family time
  • The infamous “Lenten Challenge”

logo