Are you selfish, self-centered, or proud? If your answer is yes, welcome to the human family, for whom Christ died. These ailments to our spiritual health are among the very qualities that Lent is meant to cure. Our life with Christ is a journey of conversion, and Lent is a special journey within the journey that keeps us on the right track. It’s a time to re-examine our lives and check our priorities. “Lent,” meaning “Spring,” is a sort of spring-cleaning of our souls, or a spring forward in our journey of conversion. This 40-day observance of deeper prayer, fasting, and almsgiving helps prepare us for the awe-inspiring events of Holy Week and the highest feast of the Church, Easter, where we celebrate the Resurrection of Christ. Furthermore, Lent prepares us for another awe-inspiring event, our own resurrection. It helps turn us outward, to love God and neighbor in a selfless and self-giving way – as God loves us. What else is this fleeting life for if not to prepare us for eternal life with God? Our future with God is determined by our present with Him. We can’t expect eternal life with Him if we don’t live with Him now.

This story was originally published in March 2016 Edition of The St. Francis Grapevine, our parish newsletter.