Tuesday, February 16, 2010

"Time to make the doughnuts..."

Whether you call is “Mardi Gras,” “Fat Tuesday,” or “Carnivale,” Catholics everywhere are preparing to welcome the holy season of Lent. I suspect there are doughnuts out at the Monastery, maybe, even a “King Cake.” Folks in New Orleans, Venice and Rio are eagerly anticipating the massive street parties for which these cities have become infamous. Colored beads, romantic masks and lots of feathers are the tell-tale signs that ashes are just around the corner.
Goodness knows I am a fan of celebrations. Benedictines, in general, are quite good at feasting and fasting. The older I get, the more I see them both as redemptive. I look forward to the forty days with joy. I don’t fear the absence of celebration. Sunday is always the feast of GOD’s love for us in gift of Christ Jesus. Always. We make liturgical concessions on Sunday – NO “alleluias” until the rock is rolled away – to remind us that we are celebrating the resurrection within the context of holy Lent. But the Lord's Day is never counted in the 40 days of Lent - do the math and see! The point I’m trying to make is that Lent is a joyful season. It says so in the Preface of the Ash Wednesday liturgy. Listen…and you’ll here it, too.

How will my joy be gift to others this Lent? What should I fast from? What should I fast for? How can I deepen my commitment to prayer? How can I give myself away to those who are in need? These are the questions that occupy my heart today. OK…I guess wouldn’t say, “no” to a "Krispy-Kreme!"

Blessings and love to you all…
- Sister Vicki