Dear brothers and sisters, the “lenten” period of forty days spent by the Son of God in the desert of creation had the goal of making it once more that garden of communion with God that it was before original sin. (Message of His Holiness Pope Francis for Lent 2019)
Each year, Pope Francis shares a message with us to help us prepare our hearts along our Lenten journey. His wisdom is abundant in assisting us to walk with Jesus through the desert in order to ready ourselves to embrace the unconditional gift of love that we receive through His passion, death, and resurrection.
When we think of Lent, the acts of fasting, prayer, and almsgiving are at the forefront of our thoughts. Our Holy Father offers us this counsel on those acts and how they relate to our lives:
Fasting, that is, learning to change our attitude towards others and all of creation, turning away from the temptation to “devour” everything to satisfy our voracity and being ready to suffer for love, which can fill the emptiness of our hearts. Prayer, which teaches us to abandon idolatry and the self-sufficiency of our ego, and to acknowledge our need of the Lord and his mercy. Almsgiving, whereby we escape from the insanity of hoarding everything for ourselves in the illusory belief that we can secure a future that does not belong to us. And thus to rediscover the joy of God’s plan for creation and for each of us, which is to love him, our brothers and sisters, and the entire world, and to find in this love our true happiness. You can read Pope Francis’ complete Lenten message by clicking here or visiting the Vatican website.
May you have a beautiful Lenten journey through the desert to the garden of communion with God!