03-02-2014Weekly ReflectionDeacon Ted

Dear Parish Family,

These words were used in the 1960's in a very popular show about outer space to describe the journey of that spacecraft and crew. Today I use them to describe our journey, the one that starts this coming Wednesday – our journey of the Season of Lent, 2014.

Lent is a time to seek out who we are, and who we should be, as followers of Jesus Christ. It is an opportunity given to us by our Church to spend time thinking about our lives, and to see if we need to change things within our lives, within our hearts, and within our families. To seek out new life within.

Although we all may have been through many Seasons of Lent in our lives, no two are ever the same. We are different people each Lenten season, with different situations, different priorities, different schedules, etc. No one has ever been through the Season of Lent in 2014 and so our journey this Lent is like no other. It is an opportunity for each of us to boldly, and courageously, and prayerfully go where no one has gone before.

Whether we are 7 years old or 77 years old, the journey is ours to take up. Whether we think we have the time or not, the journey is ours to take up. Whether we think there is any value to making the effort or not, the journey is ours to take up. No one starts a journey knowing what the end result will be. You have to begin the journey and stay with it, to see how it all ends up.

And so the challenge is there for each of us to embrace this Lent as we never have before. To make this journey a priority in our lives and to truly live differently this Lent, reflecting on how well we are living the call of our Lord and Savior, "then he said to all, 'If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.'" (Luke 9:23).

"Living differently" and "embracing this Lenten Season" does not mean "giving up candy and soda." But it could mean a season full of food sacrifices where each sacrifice is a reminder to pray for the Holy Spirit to enlighten your mind and your heart, and to help you become more holy. Similarly, it would not just be a season "to watch 1 hour less TV each week" but one where we watch less TV, and pray more, for wisdom and for guidance. I'm sure you see the difference.

The Lord calls all of us to follow him, completely, and this Season of Lent may be the journey where you encounter Jesus like you never have before, and clearly understand what He is calling you to do, and to be, for Him. A missed journey is a missed opportunity to learn and to grow. Please accept the Church's invitation to enthusiastically journey through Lent this year, as you never have before, to seek out new life within, and to boldly go where no one has gone before!

May Almighty God guide and encourage us this Lenten Season, and continue to bless us all, Deacon Ted