Ash Wednesday Calls for Personal and Group Action

Have you made your Lenten resolutions? Perhaps you are considering extra prayer and sacrifices of self-denial. Wonderful! But make sure the extra prayer and penance aren’t just for us ourselves. Lent is not a self-improvement challenge. Rather much in Lent is an urgent life-or-death call to community, to systemic conversion. Giving up desserts is personal and good. But do we pay a bit extra to buy produce from farmers who use methods that protect the planet’s ecosystem? Are we donating to organizations that provide clean water? Limiting favorite recreational activities is personal and good. But do we give the equivalent time to service—maybe teaching a youngster your athletic skill or baking desserts for a hospitality kitchen, or gathering the neighborhood to help a particular neighbor in need, or studying a political or social issue? We have forty days to choose best practices for the whole human community, not just for ourselves.

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  1. Catherine Schneider on February 22, 2023 at 6:55 am

    I love the way you remind us to look outwards!