First Sunday of Lent
Sunday, March 9, 2014
Do you recall comedian Flip Wilson's famous phrase: "The devil made me do it!"? That line hits home because we human beings often make excuses when we give in to temptation. But in reality, no one "makes" us sin, we choose it, just as we freely choose to do good.
Today's Scriptures present Adam and Eve, faced with a choice for good or evil: They choose to reject God, and give in to the temptation to "be like" God—in the words of the serpent-tempter.
Another temptation scene comes in the Gospel. This time Jesus, facing the choice to accomplish his ministry in selfish, power-hungry ways, rejects the temptation and affirms his true identity as God's Son.
Our Christian identity is a choice we affirmed (or which was affirmed for us) at our Baptism. But we must re-affirm that choice again and again in the face of temptation.
It's fitting that the temptation scene in the Gospel is set in the desert. In the Bible, the desert is often a place of testing, of choices. The season of Lent is like a "spiritual desert" where we hope to rediscover our identification with Christ, leading to a renewal of Baptism at Easter. Let our choices this Lent be directed by the example of Jesus in the face of temptation.
- An AmericanCatholic.org Site from the Franciscans and Franciscan Media Copyright 1996 - 2014
We might think that this “way” of poverty was Jesus’ way, whereas we who come after him can save the world with the right kind of human resources. This is not the case. In every time and place, God continues to save mankind and the world through the poverty of Christ, who makes himself poor in the sacraments, in his word and in his Church, which is a people of the poor. God’s wealth passes not through our wealth, but invariable and exclusively through our personal and communal poverty, enlivened by the Spirit of Christ.
In imitation of our Master, we Christians are called to confront the poverty of our brothers and sisters, to touch it, to make it our own and to take practical steps to alleviate it. Destitution is not the same as poverty: destitution is poverty without faith, without support, without hope. There are three types of destitution: material, moral and spiritual. Material destitution is what is normally called poverty, and affects those living in conditions opposed to human dignity: those who lack basic right and needs such as food, water, hygiene, work and the opportunity to develop and grow culturally. In response to this destitution, the Church offers her help, her diakonia, in meeting these needs and binding these wounds which disfigure the face of humanity. In the poor and outcast we see Christ’s face; by loving and helping the poor, we love and serve Christ. Our efforts are also directed to ending violations of human dignity, discrimination and abuse in the world, for these are so often the cause of destitution. When power, luxury and money become idols, they take priority over the need for a fair distribution of wealth. Our consciences thus need to be converted to justice, equality, simplicity and sharing.
- Pope Francis, Lenten Message
STATIONS OF THE CROSS
You are encouraged to pray the Stations of the Cross on the Fridays of Lent at 5:30 p.m. The service lasts about 1/2 an hour. Stations of the Cross booklets will also be available at the window near the 1st Station for those who want to pray the stations on their own or more frequently. Please return the booklets to the same windowsill after you finish praying.DAYS OF FAST AND ABSTINENCE
In addition to Ash Wednesday, Good Friday (April 18) is also a day of fast and abstinence. All Fridays of Lent are days of abstinence. Fasting refers to eating only one full meal with two small meals and no eating between meals. Abstinence refers to not eating meat. All those who have reached their 14th birthday are expected to abstain. Fasting applies to those between the ages of 18 to 60. Obviously, a person may choose to fast and abstain more frequently and more strictly than the minimum requirements of the Church.
LENTEN REFLECTION BOOKLETS
A limited number of Living the Eucharist reflection booklets entitled "From Exodus to Easter: My Daily Journey Through Lent" are available at the church entrances this weekend. They include daily meditations and prayers
In Your Prayers
Please remember in your prayers the health intention of
Marcella Adams, Arlene Balestino, Suzanne Baranik-Bowser,
Rosemary Barcaro, Barbara Barker, Becky Bettwy, Rhoda
Born, Elizabeth, Emma Helen Brolley, Valerie Brumbaugh,
Kierra Chirdon, Denise Conrad, Mary Costlow, Susie
Dalansky, Bob Decker, Evan Decker, Thomas Dobson, Marian
Dodson, Debra Dorazio, May Duey, Mike Dutchard, Jacob
Eshlenan, Shirley Fanella, Gianna Feather, Mary Frederick,
Bruce Gold, Lucas Gonzalez, Anna Marie Gority, Helen
Gummo, Elaine Hauser, Michelle Heiss, Tim Hileman, Janet
Hilton, Michael Himes, Nancy James, Ken Keagy, Larry Knott,
Sr., Russell Krenn, Meredith Kuhns, Perry Lloyd, Larry Lytle,
Brigid McManaman, Sue McMullen, Debbie Murtagh, Donny
Ott and Sheila Ott, Joe Peroni, Rene Reynolds, Joan Robison,
Elia Rocci, Gavin Ross, Arlene Schirf, Jacqueline Smith,
Robert Straw, Sr., Pete Szebin, Caitlin Thompson, Carole
Treese, Angie Yingling and the safety of Stephanie Barry.
In the event our prayers have helped, you are asked to call the rectory to have your name removed from the list. You can always have it put back on if need be. Thank you.
To have a name added to the prayer list, please call the rectory office before noon on Monday to have the name placed in that weekends bulletin. You must have the persons permission to print their name.