Thursday, March 10, 2011

No Leap Frogging Allowed

     Kevin, my mom, and I were quite amused during noon Mass at the Pastoral Center today. Monsignor Muench was the presider, and his intro into the penitential rite at the beginning of the liturgy was something to the affect off: “For all of the times when we have wanted to leap frog over Holy Thursday and the Passion of Good Friday and Saturday, so we can get right to the Easter eggs and chocolate bunnies on Sunday morning…Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.”
     I laughed at this offbeat introduction, but I know that I have often been guilty of wanting to leap frog over the tough times and get right to the triumph, victory, and celebration. I’ve found one of the greatest struggles I face when it comes to suffering is to go through it without complaining or begging God to take it away. Truth be told, I’m more likely to ask for the pain to be removed, at least for a while, than for the grace to accept the strength, courage, and hope I need to endure it.
     I’m grateful for this season of Lent, which encourages us to look at the depth of unconditional love showered upon us by the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Christ was without sin, yet He underwent tremendous suffering in mind, body, and spirit, in order to free us from our sins. What better way to remember His Ultimate Sacrifice than to focus more of our time and energy on prayer, fasting, and almsgiving?      Kevin and I are planning on doing one of our favorite Friday evening practices in Lent, going to Mass and Stations of the Cross at St. Benedict’s, then going with Fr. Kauffman down to the 40 Days for Life vigil to pray, then having a simple supper together.
     Lord, thank You for this season of sacrifice, simplicity, and sacred silence which invites us into an ever-deeper relationship with You. Amen.
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