My Dear Parishioners,
Let us ask whether the fasting and penitential disciplines we have planned for ourselves this Lent are not TOO easy. Are they rooted in custom and tradition that have become almost automatic, second nature to us? Food, drink, entertainment have so often been the focus of our penitential attention.
I would like to suggest another are of our life as a potentially fruitful are in which to improve. Ourrelationships! How we relate to others in our family, school, at work, at church could always be improved. We need to treat others as persons of dignity and worth for whom Jesus suffered and died on the cross. Any word or action that demeans or disrespects or judges them is an insult to Jesus. Holding my tongue before criticizing is a great penance which God will surely accept as a pleasing sacrifice when we link it to the Sacrifice of the Cross offered by Jesus in the Eucharistic sacrifice of the Mass.
Consider coming to Mass during the week and bringing hatred and resentments toward others and laying them at the foot of the Cross. Jesus will heal the wounded relationships in our lives if we allow Him. Lent is so short a time to reform our lives, but at least we can make a beginning. Through meditating on what Jesus suffered at the hands of evil men will help us realize that we are not alone.
Praying for a fruitful Lenten season for you and your families, I remain sincerely yours in our Crucified Savior,
Fr. David J. Kozak