Tuesday, February 21, 2012

40 Things for Lent

I was inspired by Rachel Held Evans' post that had 40 ideas for Lent. I adapted it to 40 things that I will use to try to keep me focused this season.

5 Books
1. Journey to Easter, Benedict XVI
2. On the Incarnation, St. Athanasius
3. Introduction to the Devout Life, St. Francis de Sales
4. The Great Divorce, C. S. Lewis
5. "Four Quartets," T. S. Eliot

5 Musical Pieces
1. Eyes Wide Open, Jars of Clay
2. Gethsemane, Jesus Christ, Superstar
3. Remember When It Rained, Josh Groban
4. Be Not Afraid, Lost and Found
5. Kyrie from Requiem, Mozart

10 Questions
1. Will I be as spiritually fit as possible for Confession/Confirmation/Eucharist?
2. What concrete steps can I put in place to achieve #1?
3. How will I motivate myself to read/meditate/pray every single day?
4. How will I love my neighbor?
5. Will I be more open and honest in discussing my beliefs with others?
6. What new practice can I learn to help me grow spiritually?
7. Is what I chose to give up for Lent something a) I encounter every day, b) not particularly good for me, and c) that the denial of which will be noticeable and make me remember why I am denying myself?
8. Will I not complain about fasting/abstaining? Matthew 6:16-18
9. What steps do I need to take in order to prepare for first Confession?
10. How will I handle moments of nervousness and doubt approaching Confirmation?

10 Rituals
1. Pray the Rosary daily. (Been meaning to start this for months, but maybe Lent can get me to actually make it a daily habit.)
2. Give up chocolate.
3. Abstain from meat on Fridays.
4. Collect all my loose change fromt the year to make donation to charity (undecided as to which yet).
5. Slow down: More candles, more books, more recipes, less tech, less fast food.
6. Dress modestly for church. That I was immodest before, but I’ve decided to always wear a skirt in church now, so that also includes hose/tights to cover legs, and although this may change in the summer, long sleeves as well. I’ve considered veiling, and while I’m not going to for now, it’s still a possibility if I think it would be a bigger benefit than distraction.
7. Pray for those I don’t get along/agree with.
8. Attend Stations of the Cross
9. Attend Adoration (really excited for this one!)
10. Go to first Confession (not as excited…but looking forward to it nonetheless)

10 Meditations
1. Lord’s Prayer
2. John 1:1-5
3. Faith is to believe what you do not see; the reward of this faith is to see what you believe. –St. Augustine
4. True progress quietly and persistently moves along without notice. –St. Francis de Sales
5. Matthew 6:16-18
6. Prayer of St. Francis
7. Chaplet of Divine Mercy
8. Agnes Dei
9. "When you approach the tabernacle remember that he has been waiting for you for twenty centuries." –St. Josemaria Escriva
Quick now, here, now, always—
A condition of complete simplicity
(Costing not less than everything)
And all shall be well and
All manner of thing shall be well
When the tongues of flame are in-folded
Into the crowned knot of fire
And the fire and the rose are one.
-T.S. Eliot

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