From Our PDNL

What is Lent?

Lent is the forty-day liturgical season of fasting, special prayer and almsgiving in preparation for Easter. The name "Lent" is from the Middle English Lenten and Anglo-Saxon Lenten, meaning spring; its more primitive ecclesiastical name was the "forty days," tessaracoste in Greek. The number "forty" is first noted in the Canons of Nicaea (A.D. 325), likely in imitation of Jesus' fast in the desert before His public ministry (with Old Testament precedent in Moses and Elijah). By the fourth century, in most of the West, it referred to six days' fast per week of six weeks (Sundays were excluded); in the seventh century the days from Ash Wednesday through the First Sunday were added to make the number forty.

10 tips for making the season more meaningful
  1. Slow Down - Set aside 10 minutes a day for silent prayer or meditation. It will revitalize your body and your spirit.
  2. Read a good book - You could choose the life of a saint, a spiritual how-to, an inspirational book or one of the pope's new books.
  3. Be kind - Go out of your way to do something nice for someone else every day.
  4. Get involved - Attend a Lenten lecture or spiritual program.
  5. Volunteer at your parish - Whether it's the parish fish fry, cleaning the church or helping with the food drive, it will give you a chance to help others.
  6. Reach out - Invite an inactive Catholic to come with you to receive ashes on Ash Wednesday.
  7. Pray - Especially for people you don't like and for people who don't like you.
  8. Tune out - Turn off the television and spend quality time talking with family members or friends.
  9. Clean out closets - Donate gently used items to the St. Vincent de Paul Society.
  10. Donate - Google "Catholic Missions." Then pick one mission and

decide how you can help by sending money, clothing or supplies "May Lent be for every Christian a renewed experience of God's love given to us in Christ, a love that each day we, in turn, must 're-give' to our neighbor, especially to the one who suffers most and is in need."

-Pope Benedict XVI

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