I have come to fall in love with teaching in Catholic schools. What are YOU in love with?...

"Nothing is more practical than finding God, that is, than falling in love in a quite absolute, final way. What you are in love with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything. It will decide what will get you out of bed in the morning, what you will do with your evenings, how you will spend your weekends, what you read, who you know, what breaks your heart, and what amazes you with joy and gratitude. Fall in love, stay in love, and it will decide everything." - Pedro Arrupe

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Learning from Lent

About a week ago (a week ago, a week ago - no, stop, I'm not referring to the song), the student body gathered for our weekly Mass during Holy Week. During his homily, our visiting (but fairly regular) priest got straight to the heart of the matter: How have you changed in light of following your Lenten promises? and How will you keep up the spirit of your Lenten promises after Easter?

One of my students raised his hand to answer the first question. He explained that during Lent he had given up video games - you know, the ones like Warcraft and Halo. Well, the young boy went on to share how his father had recently told him that he'd noticed a difference in the boy's behavior, that he was being nicer and more respectful since he'd stopped playing those games.

What a great example of change for the better, which, as Christians, aren't we striving for in making our Lenten promises in the first place?

So, our priest asked for another example. No one raised a hand, so I volunteered to share about one of my own Lenten promises - sending a note/card a day to different friends and family members. How did this change me? As I explained to those in Church with me, it helped me focus on friendships and gratitude. It allowed me to connect with people I don't always talk to and to realize how I should spend more time cultivating those friendships. So, while I likely won't be sending a card a day every day in the year to come, I do want to commit to pouring more effort into keeping in touch and spending time with the wonderful people in my life.

Lent is over, but Easter is just getting started. And, as you'll notice, in the Church year, the Easter season is 50 days (which is 10 days more than Lent) - there's a reason for that. We're meant to celebrate the most important holiday of our Church year.

Alleluia! He is Risen!


  1. I asked this question to one of the bishops on Twitter (and the USCCB's Twitter team, by extension): are there any practical ways to keep celebrating Easter? For Lent, there is prayer, fasting, and almsgiving in its many forms, plus required Friday abstinence. There are so many daily Lent reflections that it's almost overwhelming. For Easter, the only thing I have found is the Little White Book (a companion to the Little Black Book). I tried that a few years ago, but I didn't really like it. Is there anything in the day-to-day for Easter?

  2. Oh Lindsay, the age old question. Resources are something that I am always working to find and put together. Here are a few things I am going to start/continue to do (not that they're related specifically to Ordinary Time/Easter):

    - daily emails from YouCat ("YouCat in a Year"), pray.nd.edu. and Dynamic Catholic
    - weekly podcasts from Fr. Barron and Fr. Mike
    - Divine Mercy chaplet (in light that the year of Divine Mercy starts in the fall, I think)

    In addition, I am going to try to keep up my Lenten promises in (at least) smaller ways, trying to realize why I made those goals in the first place and how they can continue to help me grow closer to God. If I come across anything specific to the Easter season, I will pass it on.

    P.S. There's a great website called "Catholic APPtitude" (http://catholicapptitude.org/) - I get regular emails from the site regarding free (or cheap) apps relevant to the Liturgical season. You should check it out!