Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Lent is a special time of prayer, penance, sacrifice and good works in preparation of the celebration of Easter.
Vatican Council II stated, “The two elements which are especially characteristic of Lent — the recalling of baptism or the preparation for it, and penance
Pope St. Leo (d. 461) preached that the faithful must “fulfill with their fasts the Apostolic institution of the 40 days,” again noting the apostolic origins of Lent. One can safely conclude that by the end of the fourth century, the 40-day period of Easter preparation known as Lent existed, and that prayer and fasting constituted its primary spiritual exercises.
Of course, the number “40” has always had special spiritual significance regarding preparation. On Mount Sinai, preparing to receive the Ten Commandments, “Moses stayed there with the Lord for 40 days and 40 nights, without eating any food or drinking any water” (Ex 34:28). Elijah walked “40 days and 40 nights” to the mountain of the Lord, Mount Horeb (another name for Sinai) (I Kgs 19:8). Most importantly, Jesus fasted and prayed for “40 days and 40 nights” in the desert before He began His public ministry (Mt 4:2).
Learning about Lent and Easter Season
- What is Lenten Season? Lent is a season of repentance, and a time to prepare for the celebration of the Passover of Jesus.
- How many days of Lenten Season? When it starts and end? The Lenten Season is 40 days long, including six Sundays; beginning at Ash Wednesday and ending before the Last Supper Mass on the Evening Holy Thursday.
- What is the meaning of receiving the Ash on forehead? What are the words given by minister? Receiving ashes on the forehead reminds Christians of our human weakness, and sinfulness, therefore, we must live with an attitude of humility before our Lord and to recognize and repent for our sins. The minister says these words when she/he gives ashes to people “repent and believe in the Gospel” or “From dust you came to dust you shall return.”
- What is fasting? Only one full meal and maybe a light meal at breakfast and dinner. no snacking throughout the day (candy, cake, fruit,) and do not drink coke, beer, wine, coffee, tea… water only.
- What is the purpose of fasting? To grow in charity, sharing, and helping the needy and the poor. To make little sacrifices
- According to the law of the Church, what age must keep fasting? Every people from age 14 until age 60 must fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.
- The four directions of the Lenten Season? REPENTANCE, Fasting, Prayer, Almsgiving.
- What day is the peak of Lenten season?
Holy week begins with Palm Sunday.
- In Lent, which days do Christians keep fast and abstain from meat? During Lent, the Church professed Christians hold fast and abstain from meat on Ash Wednesday and the Good Friday. And to Abstain from Meat on Fridays of Lent
- Palm Sunday, what does the Church commemorate on this day? The Church celebrates the event of Jesus solemnly entering into Jerusalem to complete the salvation of God.
- The Palms are blessed on Palm Sunday to be retained in each family remind us of what? That Palms remind us of Christ’s Victory over sin and death.
- During the Holy week, what does the Church commemorate? The Church commemorates Jesus’ passion, death, and resurrection.
- What are the differences between Lenten and Easter Season Masses? Lent- the Gloria is not said and Alleluia is not sung and there are very little instruments at Mass. The Not decorations in the Church are limited and the priest wears purple.
The Easter season- the Gloria is say and there is Music for Mass. Alleluia is sung and the sanctuary is decorated. The priest wears White.
- What does the Church celebrate on the Holy Thursday? Holy Thursday commemorates last super with Jesus and his disciples. He instituted the Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist, and has given us the new law of love.
- What does the Church commemorate on Good Friday? On Good Friday, the Church commemorates the passion of Jesus Christ, and the worship of the cross.
- What does the Church want us to do on the Holy Saturday? During the day, the Church invites the faithful along with Mary in prayer at Jesus’ tomb; to reflect on the suffering, death and burial of Jesus in hope and trust; in order to prepare our hearts to enter into the Easter Vigil Celebration.
- How long is The Easter Season? The Easter season is seven weeks long, starting with Easter Sunday and ending Pentecost Sunday.
- What is the Easter Celebration? It is the most important Celebration of the liturgical year, for it is a commemoration of the Resurrection of our Lord.
- How many days do we celebrate the Easter Solemnity? There are 8 days of the week of The Octave of Easter; begin with Easter Sunday.
- On Easter Sunday, can there be a separate celebration of a Funeral or Marriage? No, because Easter Sunday took precedence over all feasts.
- During the Easter Season, what is read sometimes instead of the Angelus? “Our Queen of Heaven”
- The Church teaches people after one makes their first communion, they are to do what during the Easter Season? To make a good confession and to receive Communion at least once during Easter Season