When Irish people think of March, the main thing that spring to mind is Saint Patrick. The time to remember him, how he brought the catholic faith to Ireland, using a shamrock to explain the Holy Trinity and banished all the snakes… but this year there is also another event we as Catholic have
Lent is the 40 days (excluding Sundays) from Ash Wednesday to the Saturday before Easter Sunday. This year Ash Wednesday is on the 26th of February. It a time for believers to reflect, repent, offer sacrifice in preparation for Good Friday and Easter Sunday.
The main things people focus on during lent are Prayer, Fasting and Charity.
- Prayer during Lent focuses on our need on God’s forgiveness. It’s also includes repenting and receiving God’s mercy and love.
- Fasting or sacrificing is giving up something that we would do regularly. For some it could be giving up eating something they enjoy, for others it could be giving up an activity they do and for others it could be doing something that they normally wouldn’t do.
- Charity (or the giving of something), giving in a charitable way, this can be in the form of giving financially or giving of your time. We have a traditional way of giving, the money saved on things we have given up for Lent and putting it in to our Trócaire box. We can also give our time to help others, to listen or just to be there in a time of need.
For all of us, to make a sacrifice and in doing so we remember the sacrifice that Jesus made for us.
We do this to remember when Jesus went into the Desert for forty days and forty nights. While here he prayed and fasted. We are also told that he was strong and resisted the temptations presented to him by Satan. Mark 4:1-11