So Much to Do. Forty Days to Do It?

The life of a monk ought to be a continuous Lent. Since few, however, have the strength for this, we urge the entire community during these days of Lent to keep its manner of life most pure and to wash away in this holy season the negligences of other times.
Rule of St. Benedict, Chapter 49: The Observance of Lent

Thanks be to the Father who made us like himself
Thanks be to his Son who saved us by his death.
Thanks be to the Spirit who creates the world anew
From an offering of ashes …

Ashes, Tom Conry

Social media is not the likely place to find contemplative thought. Every once in a while, though, something jumps out and stays with you, enough that you want to share it.

Some friends were describing their adventures in visiting colleges with their oldest son, who will start in Fall,2022. It is stressful, adventuresome, and most interesting, with the discussion in the car before and after.

One of their friends shared the saying “The hours are long, but the days are short”.

They were referring to the time we have with our children, watching them grow, suffer through the lows and celebrating the highs in their lives. It starts at childbirth, and, suddenly, they’re gone. Any parent can identify all too well with the “transition in a blink”.

So it is with Lent. We have only 40 days to change not only our hearts, but to help those we know, even barely, to change theirs, and be ready to celebrate Christ’s passion and rising.

We were there “at the beginning”, awaiting His birth, and celebrating His coming among us, one with us, but still, The Son of God.

Our greatest challenge is to tune out the worldly distractions, to be still, and know, that God’s love is manifest in Jesus’ ministry, His passion, death, and glorious Resurrection.

No matter what earthly powers, with earthly rules, judgement, and execution there were, Christ, in His humanity, saved US.

As was the case with the disciples, we are here to accomplish our temporal responsibilities, and to be Christ’s presence for one another.

But, we must be continual witnesses to the Truth to an increasingly disdainful world. That.. is the biggest and most important task ahead.

Can we live a “continuous Lent”, as St. Benedict describes in the Rule? Even he says that is an ideal, and not practical.

In the long hours, and short time, we have, we can strive to be examples to the world, and to each other, of people we could not imagine we could be.

Christ imagined in, in His suffering, dying, and rising for us. We can spend the time we have living His actions in our world.

A meaningful and beautiful Lent to you.



Michael Throop