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Lenten Season
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Lent is the period of 40 days of fasting that is preceding Easter. Often this 40 day period is paralleled with the story of Jesus being in the desert for 40 days being tempted by the devil. (Matthew 4:1-11) and this is the reading for the first Sunday of Lent to remind us of that parallel. Originally Lent was no more than a word used for the Spring Season, similar to Autumn being referred to as fall.  But in Modern time its a period for fasting, prayer and alms giving.  The 40 days in the Catholic Church are 40 days not counting Sundays.

Lent has become a period to prepare you heart for the Easter Season. You are to do this though prayer and penance and almsgiving. On a personal note I have to say i particularly like the Ash Wednesday reading that explains that when you fast don't wear it on your sleeve so everyone knows. When you pray don't pray on the street corner pray in the privacy of your own home and God will take care of you. I think this is a powerful message and it is always a great reminder (Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18) to start of Lent in how we are commissioned to act and react.

Lent runs though Holy week starting with Palm Sunday, and the commemoration of Jesus triumphant return to Jerusalem all the way though his passion, crucifixion  and then the glorious celebration of His Resurrection. The Sacred Triduum is among the highest holy days of the year take place at the end of the Lenten season and the Easter Sunday. They are Holy Thursday or Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday.

On Maundy Thursday, it is the commemoration of the Last Supper including the washing of feet. And most importantly during Holy Thursday Mass, all the hosts are blessed which will be used all the way though Easter Vigil. There are no masses celebrated on Good Friday and what is most fascinating about this is that the Holy Thursday mass does not end. It is left opened and finalized until the end of Good Friday Services. This is one of the most special times in the church and everyone should make a point to participate in all three days. It is steeped in tradition and a great way to end the Lenten Season.

Seasons of the Catholic Church:


Up a level: Liturgical Calendar
Related Topics:
  • Easter Season
  • Advent
  • Below is a list of articles with the most recent ones listed first.
    Lenten Church Decoration ideas
    Published: Sunday 10 January, 2010
    Palm Sunday Around the Globe
    Palm Sunday Around the Globe
    Published: Sunday 16 March, 2008
    The Roots of Palm Sunday
    A brief overview of Palm Sunday
    Published: Sunday 16 March, 2008
    Why Fast During Lent
    The history of the lenten fast.
    Published: Friday 07 March, 2008
    Mardi Gras and the Catholic Church
    Brief history of mardi gras and fat tuesday
    Published: Sunday 10 February, 2008
    Displaying 1 to 5 (of 5 articles) Result Pages:  1