The First week of lent

(CNS photo by Paul Haring)

The Lenten season feels so long, so winter-ridden, and in this time of lingering pandemic, especially isolating. Yet, the Online Etymology Dictionary reminds us that Lent comes from an Old English word meaning “lengthening of the day,” “spring.”

Perhaps we’re called to approach Lent not as a marathon of tasks meant to break our will but as a blossoming born of accompanying Christ through the desert, an opportunity to grow in our relationship with him along the way.

(CNS photo by Nick Oxford/Reuters)

In his 2013 apostolic exhortation Evangelii Gaudium (“The Joy of the Gospel”), Pope Francis spoke of his dream for a “missionary option” (No. 27). To Pope Francis, this “option” is a new order of priorities in the everyday reality of ministry within the life of the church that moves from an outlook of self-preservation to evangelization. What might this missionary option mean for us this Lent?

In this video, Catholic recording artist Matt Maher brings context to the beginning of Lent. To listen to the song that he mentions in the video, click here.

Rite of Election

For Christians, Lent is a time of prayer, penance, fasting and almsgiving. But for candidates and catechumens on a journey through the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults, Lent also involves significant steps toward full communion with the Catholic Church, culminating at the Easter Vigil. One such step for candidates and catechumens is participating in the Rite of Election & Call to Continuing Conversion.

Bishop Salvatore R. Matano will celebrate the Rite of Election at Sacred Heart Cathedral in Rochester at 2 p.m. Feb. 21.

Fish: Symbol of Christianity

Fish are at the center of some favorite Bible stories — Jonah and the great fish, the multiplication of the loaves and fishes, Jesus appealing to fishermen to become his apostles.

Fish: Center of New Testament stories

Many churches sponsor fish dinners on Fridays during Lent. Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has cancelled fish dinners for some churches, while others altered their plans to offer take-outs only.

Greece: St. John the Evangelist Church

Fridays during Lent beginning Feb. 19 through March 26 from 4-7 p.m. Dinners will be take-out only and place orders at parish center. 

Greece: St. Mark Church

Fridays during Lent beginning Feb. 19 through Good Friday, April 2, from 4:30 – 6:30 p.m.
Dinners will be curbside service take-out only. 

Irondequoit: St. Kateri Parish at Christ the King Church

Fridays beginning March 5 through March 26 from 5-7 p.m. Dinners will be drive-thru only.

Webster: St. Rita Church

Fridays during Lent starting Feb. 19 through March 26 from 5-7 p.m. Pre-order take-out fish dinners only