Each year the Lord Jesus calls the entire Church to a special season of penance and renewal. As we begin this holy time of Lent, we should reflect on our need for conversion of heart, prayer, charitable works and penance.
While some people continue to think about it, many donors to the Catholic Service and Ministry Appeal (CSMA) choose to give to the diocesan appeal. Giving, they say, is not only good for the soul, it helps untold numbers of people.
Sometimes the Season of Lent seems more like a way of life than a specific period of time carved out in the Church year. If we knew that 40 days of suffering and denial would lead to great joy and redemption, we could do that easily, reaching out with hope and almost joy.
The annual liturgy of the First Sunday of Lent presents us with one of three versions of the temptation of Jesus — Mark or Matthew or Luke. These are not the only temptation-of-Jesus proclamations in the New Testament. The Letter to the Hebrews contains two.
This gospel reading is the sixth and final selection from Matthew’s Sermon on the Mount. This section concerns wealth, money, possessions. The headline is in the conclusion: “You cannot serve God and mammon,” (a Semitic word for money or wealth).