From the Pastor – February 1, 2009

We’ve got a few weeks before Mardi Gras, and most of our preparation during this time might be on parties and parades and balls and food. But it’s not too early to think about Lent. None of us want to wake up on Ash Wednesday with a headache trying to think of something to sacrifice during Lent!

The traditional activities of Lent include prayer, fasting and alms-giving. So how will you incorporate that into your Lent this year? Will you go to Daily Mass? Will you abstain from meat or alcohol or sweets? Will you decide to give larger donations to the Church so that it can provide greater outreach to the poor? Now is the time to make some resolutions.

Let me tell you what I will be doing in the parish during Lent. Of course, I have my own personal Lenten sacrifices, but there are a few things that I’d like to do for you. The first thing is that I will offer more of my time sitting in the Confessional. I was so happy to have heard so many confessions last Sunday so that many of you could receive the Plenary Indulgence offered by the Holy Father on the Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul. And I will do the same thing during Lent. Although there is one weekend when I will be away for a conference, I will hear confessions after the 8:00 a.m. Mass until the 10:30 a.m. Mass and after the 10:30 a.m. Mass until everyone has left. And I will do it each Sunday of Lent.

Secondly, I will offer a Friday evening Mass at 6:00 p.m. preceded by the Stations of the Cross at 5:30 p.m. on each Friday of Lent. Finally, we will celebrate the Sundays of Lent with a little more simplicity and solemnity. To that end we will begin using the Latin Mass parts (the “Sanctus” and the “Agnus dei“) at the time of the “Holy, Holy, Holy” and the “Lamb of God.” You can read more of that on this page. I’m hoping that all of these things will be useful in providing a means to grow closer to God through prayer and the Sacraments. I hope you will agree!

So, what did you say you’re doing for Lent? If you want, you can email me at to tell me!