My Dear Parishioners:
The Lenten/Easter season will be here shortly and our parish family will be preparing for the most solemn time of the liturgical year, Easter Sunday.
Lent begins this year on Ash Wednesday March 5th, 2014. The Lenten season is the time to look into our souls in order to prepare for the greatest feast of the Church: Our Lords Resurrection.
My friends let this be a time where all of us together come to the house of God to reaffirm our faith in our risen Lord and His Church. This can be a time of spiritual revival; within our parish family and as individual believers in the Word.
Come to the Fish Fry’s, Stations of the Cross, daily Mass, pray the Living Stations with our Life Teen Ministry. Try to attend our Lenten Parish Mission given by Fr. Gaurav Shroff (formerly “Deacon G”) and of course our Lenten Penance Service. Attend the HOLY TRIDUUM: HOLY THURSDAY, GOOD FRIDAY, EASTER VIGIL and EASTER SUNDAY.
May your family take advantage of the many spiritual activities proposed by the parish that will prepare your heart and soul for the great feast of Holy Mother the Church the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Sincerely Yours in Christ-
Fr. John M. Matejek
Click Here for the 2014 Lenten Schedule: lent 2014 — is a pdf file and can be easily printed for your use.
Lenten Requirements- Fasting, Abstinence and Penance
Catholics between the ages of 18 and 59 are obliged to fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. In addition, all Catholics 14 years old and older must abstain from meat on Ash Wednesday, Good Friday and all the Fridays of Lent.
Fasting as explained by the U.S. bishops means partaking of only one full meal. Some food (not equaling another full meal) is permitted at breakfast and around midday or in the evening—depending on when a person chooses to eat the main or full meal. Abstinence forbids the use of meat, but not of eggs, milk products or condiments made of animal fat.
Abstinence does not include meat juices and liquid foods made from meat. Thus, such foods as chicken broth, consommé, soups cooked or flavored with meat, meat gravies or sauces, as well as seasonings or condiments made from animal fat are not forbidden. So it is permissible to use margarine and lard. Even bacon drippings which contain little bits of meat may be poured over lettuce as seasoning.
Each year in publishing the Lenten penance requirements, the U.S. bishops quote the teaching of the Holy Father concerning the seriousness of observing these days of penance. The obligation to do penance is a serious one. Moral theologians remind us that some people are excused from fasting and/or abstinence because of sickness or other reasons.
In his “Apostolic Constitution on Penance,” Pope Paul VI did more than simply reorganize Church law concerning fast and abstinence. He reminded us of the divine law that each of us in our own way do penance. We must all turn from sin and make reparation to God for our sins. We must forgive and show love for one another just as we ask for God’s love and forgiveness.
The Code of Canon Law and our bishops remind us of other works and means of doing penance: prayer, acts of self-denial, almsgiving and works of personal charity. Attending Mass daily or several times a week, praying the rosary, making the way of the cross, attending the parish evening prayer service, teaching the illiterate to read, reading to the blind, helping at a soup kitchen, visiting the sick and shut-ins and giving an overworked mother a break by baby-sitting—all of these can be even more meaningful and demanding than simply abstaining from meat on Friday.
-From “Ask A Franciscan”, St. Anthony Messenger magazine