Lent is here; things to know

Lenten regulations

ABSTINENCE:  All Catholics who have reached their 14th birthday are bound to abstain from meat onAsh Wednesday, all Fridays of Lent and Good Friday.  

FASTING:  All Catholics between their 18th and 59th birthday are bound to observe the Laws of Fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.  Those bound by this rule may take only one full meal.  Two smaller meals are permitted as necessary to maintain strength, but eating solid foods between meals is not permitted. 

Here are some suggestions to help you have a productive Lent:

Stations of the Cross

Each Friday during Lent, our parish will host Stations of the Cross at 12:15 p.m. All are welcome to attend. There also will be Stations of the Cross at 7 p.m. every Friday hosted by a different parish each week. Here is the schedule:

  • April 12: Our Lady of the Rosary

Best Lent Ever’ emails

Want to do something life changing? Want to find the best version of yourself? How about some simple ways to transform your life? Dynamic Catholic’s free Best Lent Ever email program will take you on a 40-day spiritual journey to encounter Jesus and yourself in a deeply personal way, and begin (or nourish) a habit of daily prayer. Sign up for free to receive daily emails for Lent beginning Ash Wednesday visiting DynamicCatholic.com. Click on Free Resources and then click on “Best Lent Ever” and sign up. Click here to register. The videos also can be found on the parish’s Pinterest page..

Lent at home

During Lent, we have several programs that that you can do at home to enrich your life during this season. 

  • WALK TO JERUSALEM

Lent is a time for change. It is a time to reform, repent and renew ourselves.

What better way to do this then to combine our hearts with our health. Can we change our hearts for Christ and along the way help our hearts to stay healthy?

Let us go on a journey this Lent with Christ.

Jesus road into Jerusalem like a king and then walked the path to the cross for us, stripped of his dignity and treated like a criminal.

Let us take time this Lent to walk FOR Christ and WITH Christ.

How do we do this?

As a parish we are going to walk, run or bicycle during Lent for a collective total of 5,656.57 miles to get us from our church to Jerusalem. During the times you walk, run or bike, add prayer to your time. Take the time to pray, say the rosary or just talk to God during your steps. Give Him the much needed time that He deserves and you will find yourself feeling better and becoming more open to hearing what He has to say to you.

Take the time during this Lent to listen!

How does this work?

Keep track of your miles or steps each day and let us know once a week by emailing (aelacguasyrdio.org), texting (315-941-7447) or dropping a note in the basket by the Service Corner (papers will be there to write on) at the Jay Street entrance, or placing the paper in the collection basket.

Indicate your name (if you want) and date, and the number of miles or steps that you have completed for the week. Each week, we will tally what comes in and, hopefully, by Easter we will have arrived to Jerusalem to share in His journey and rejoice in His Resurrection. A chart will be on display in church so we can view our progress each week.

Let’s get our hearts read and get healthy along the way.

  • DO NICE THINGS CHALLENGE

Here is a #Do1NiceThing challenge — which is about loving the person in front of you as well as serving the wider community to make life better for the people around us — and ourselves in the process

Ash Wednesday, March 6: Engage in conversation with the people who serve you (e.g. food servers, cashiers, etc.)

March 7: Say thank you to someone as they work and say how much you appreciate them.

March 8: Call in on an elderly neighbor — take some cake, have a cup of tea and a chat.

March 9: Shop locally and support local farmers, local vegetable growers and local shops.

March 10 (first Sunday in Lent): Show some love to your neighborhood — pick up litter or see if there is anything more you can recycle at home.

March 11: Hold open doors for those behind you.

March 12: Smile at people.

March 13: Be a nice driver — spread road-calm.

March 14: Email/write to a local charity you think does a great work and thank them and those who volunteer.

March 15: Take time to pray for your neighbors.

March 16: Spread the niceness on Facebook and Twitter. Compliment some of your friends.

March 17 (second Sunday in Lent): Pick up a few extra grocery items at the store for a local food pantry or soup kitchen.

March 18: Write a letter (or use social media) to a local emergency service and thank them for the work they do.

March 19: Say hello to people.

March 20: Cook a little bit more for dinner and bring it to a relative, neighbor or friend.

March 21: Spot ways of helping people and do it.

March 22: Go on a thankful walk — see all the positive things you can be thankful for in your neighborhood.

March 23: Buy Fairtrade where you can today.

March 24 (third Sunday in Lent): Take a single person or elderly person out for lunch/dinner.

March 25: Consider investing some time volunteering — could you give 24 hours over the next year?

March 26: Bring back your bottles and cans and donate that money to the veterans’ group or a soup kitchen.

March 27: Go through a drive-thru window (such as Dunkin Donuts) and pay for the person behind you.

March 28: Give the coin change you received at stores today to a donation box at its register.

March 29: Say extra prayers for our service men and women who keep us safe.

March 30: Take a prayer walk around your neighborhood and pray for needs.

March 31 (fourth Sunday in Lent): Take some flowers to mothers and grandmothers.

April 1: Buy seeds and start an indoor plant (vegetable or flower) — grow some happiness.

April 2: Look for ways and set it up to volunteer one hour of your time for someone else.

April 3: Say extra prayers today for those who hold political offices.

April 4: Take time to discover a tourist attraction in your area such as a park, zoo, play area, etc.

April 5: Give away a book you think is worth reading.

April 6: Write some inspirational messages on Post-It notes and randomly leave for people to find.

April 7 (fifth Sunday in Lent): Help someone down the stairs or hold open a door for someone who has a difficult time.

April 8: Take the time to talk to someone you haven’t spoken with in a long time.

April 9: Offer your skills to someone else for free.

April 10: Write a letter or contact the boss of someone who has given you excellent customer service to tell them so.

April 11: Clear out unwanted items and give to a charity.

April 12: Take the extra effort to make it a meatless day.

April 13: Thank people for the virtues they have.

Palm Sunday, April 14: Tell your pastor how much you appreciate him.

April 15: Send flowers to a friend as a thank-you for your friendship.

April 16: Give a New Testament or inspirational book to someone you don’t know.

April 17: Take a box of chocolates to work and say thank you to your colleagues.

And just because this list ends doesn’t mean you can’t keep on spreading kindness.

  • EXTRA CHALLENGE: 40 ITEMS TO CHARITY

Each day during Lent you get rid of an article of clothing that you no longer need or wear. At the end of Lent you will have a nice donation for those in need. You also can say a prayer each day as you collect those items.­