Category Archives: Lent

A Lenten Word: Daniel 3:41-43

And now we follow you with our whole heart, we fear you and we seek your face. Do not put us to shame, but deal with us in your kindness and great mercy. Deliver us in accord with your wonders, … Continue reading

Posted in Lent, Scripture | Leave a comment

The Joseph Dispensation

So, some dioceses have recognized the importance of a liturgical solemnity, the level of celebration that bumps an ordinary Sunday off the ordo. During Lent all it might do is open the food gates. How does a Christian honor Saint … Continue reading

Posted in Commentary, Lent, Saints | Leave a comment

A Lenten Word: 1 Peter 4:7b-8

Good counsel can be hard to swallow. Toward the end of a section written for early Christians under pressure, we read two useful bits of advice from an apostle who is certain “the end is near.” What end is that? … Continue reading

Posted in Lent, Scripture | Leave a comment

A Lenten Word: Psalm 79:8-9

The seventy-ninth Psalm is a communal lament. It expresses alarm that invading foreigners have profaned the Temple and destroyed Jerusalem, the heart of Jewish faith and culture. The ancients interpreted disaster as divine disfavor. Over and over, the prophets cautioned … Continue reading

Posted in Lent, Scripture | Leave a comment

A Lenten Word: Job 14:7-12

Chapters 12, 13, and 14 find Job responding to his friend Zophar. Toward the end of this third speech of his, he ponders a contrast. A plant might be cut back, but Job’s experience tells him that recovery, renewal, and … Continue reading

Posted in Lent, Scripture | Leave a comment

Lent, Purim, Reliance on God

This week, we get a brief overlap in our Jewish and Catholic traditions. At Mass today, Esther’s prayer to God: God of Abraham, God of Isaac, and God of Jacob, blessed are you. Help me, who am alone and have … Continue reading

Posted in Food, Lent, Liturgy, Scripture | Leave a comment

A Lenten Word: Zechariah 1:3b-4

From the introduction of a larger work of a post-Exile prophet, we read of the intended mutuality between God and his people. This is covenant: Return to me, says the Lord of hosts, and I will return to you, says the Lord of hosts. … Continue reading

Posted in Lent, Scripture | Leave a comment

A Lenten Word: Ezekiel 18:23

In our series on Reconciliation readings, we looked at today’s Bible passage here and here in a larger context, verses 20 through 32. In the Liturgy of the Hours, Psalms are primary, and readings outside of the Office of Readings … Continue reading

Posted in Lent, Scripture | Leave a comment

A Lenten Word: from Isaiah 30:15

In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and in trust shall be your strength. The context of Isaiah 30 is a prophet’s warning against making an ill-advised alliance with Egypt. The international politics of the ancient world … Continue reading

Posted in Lent, Scripture | Leave a comment

A Lenten Word: James 1:27

I am finding the readings in the daytime Liturgy of the Hours to be full of nourishing morsels for the life of Lent. A single verse today, with cautions. Let’s read: Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the … Continue reading

Posted in Lent, Scripture | Leave a comment

A Lenten Word: Hebrews 10:35-36

We’re only two days into the season, and maybe we’ve already faltered. What is needed is confidence: Do not, therefore, abandon that confidence of yours; it brings a great reward. For you need endurance, so that when you have done … Continue reading

Posted in Lent, Scripture | 3 Comments

A Lenten Word: Ezekiel 18:30b-32

If you are active in the daytime Liturgy of the Hours, this Ash Wednesday reading may be familiar to you. Otherwise, you may need to pay attention at a summertime Saturday morning Mass every other year*. Let’s read: Repent and … Continue reading

Posted in Lent, Scripture | Leave a comment

The Armchair Liturgist: Ashes in 2021

In the time of pandemic, our parishes are getting instruction on distributing ashes two weeks from this writing. Sprinkling ashes on the heads of penitents was the first suggestion I saw a few months ago. A later complaint: ashes in … Continue reading

Posted in Lent, The Armchair Liturgist | 2 Comments

Fake Meat Fridays

The young miss adheres to a strict vegan diet. Perhaps not the strictest, as she occasionally cooks with fake meat, a vegetable product that has the texture and flavor of meat. I asked her once if this is viewed by … Continue reading

Posted in Commentary, Lent | 2 Comments

Setting Philippians 3

If your community proclaimed the year C readings this past weekend, you enjoyed a Pauline gem from his letter to the Philippians. The Roman Lectionary assigns verses 8 through 14 to follow Psalm 126. Most Bible publishers set it as … Continue reading

Posted in Lent, Liturgical Music, Scripture | 3 Comments