Wednesday, February 18, 2015

An invitation

Invitation to Lenten Discipline
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ:
The early Christians observed with great devotion 
 . . . the days of our Lord’s passion and resurrection,
 . . . and it became the custom of the church that before the Easter celebration 
 . . .  . . . there should be a forty-day season of spiritual preparation.
During this season, converts to the faith were prepared for Holy Baptism.
It was also a time when persons who had committed serious sins 
 . . . and had separated themselves from the community of faith
 . . . were reconciled by penitence and forgiveness.,
 . . . and restored to participation in the life of the church.
In this way the whole congregation was reminded
 . . . of the mercy and forgiveness proclaimed in the gospel of Jesus Christ
 . . . and the need we all have to renew our faith.
I invite you, therefore, in the name of the Church,
 . . . to observe a holy Lent:
 . . . by self-examination and repentance;
 . . . by prayer, fasting and self-denial;
 . . . and by reading and meditating on God’s Holy Word.
To make a right beginning of repentance,
 . . . and as a sign of our mortal nature,
bow in silence before God, our creator and redeemer.

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