Check out this sample video from the Best Lent Ever 2016 program, which was based on Matthew Kelly’s newest bestseller Rediscover Jesus.. You can also view the accompanying short reflection and special second video.
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Check out reflections and videos from this past Lent.
Day 40 – There are so many moving passages that we read throughout the Gospels about Jesus’ life—moments of monumental victory and moments of desperate disappointment. And yet, some of the most touching moments…Click here to read more!
Day 39 – These are trying times for people of faith. But when my heart is weary and my mind is tortured, I always return to two truths. The first is this: Christianity has never failed. It is simply incapable of failure. Many have…Click here to read more!
Lent is a 40-day period leading up to Easter, beginning with Ash Wednesday. (This year, Ash Wednesday is March 1.) Lent is a known as a penitential season. That means it is an opportunity to examine your life, give your struggles to God, and invite him to help you become the-best-version-of-yourself®.
In particular, there is an increased focus on prayer, fasting, and almsgiving, All these spiritual exercises help prepare us for the celebration of the passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus.
Lent in 2017 begins on Ash Wednesday (March 1, 2017).
The day before Ash Wednesday is popularly known as Mardi Gras (literally Fat Tuesday). Since Lent is a season of fasting, Fat Tuesday traditionally is a final day of feasting and merrymaking before the 40-day fast.
Easter in 2017 is April 16, 2017.
Lent is the perfect time to form new life-giving habits and abandon old self-destructive habits. But most of us just give up chocolate. Then, when Easter arrives, we realize we really haven't grown spiritually since the beginning of Lent.
Lent is not just about giving things up, like chocolate. Lent is about doing something—something bold to become a better husband or wife, father or mother, son or daughter, friend, neighbor, etc.
What if this year you did more than just give up something during Lent? Do something life-changing. Sign up for Dynamic Catholic’s Best Lent Ever.
Prayer, fasting, and almsgiving are the three traditional practices of Lent. They are meant to help us turn away from self-destructive habits and open ourselves to God so he can help us become the-best-version-of-ourselves.
Therese of Lisieux wrote, “For me, prayer is a surge of the heart; it is a simple look turned toward heaven, it is a cry of recognition and of love, embracing both trial and joy.” And yet, the truth is, prayer is perhaps the most difficult thing we will ever do.
Prayer is central to the Christian experience. A Christian life is not sustainable without it; growth in the Christian life is simply not possible without prayer. Growing in character and virtue, learning to hear the voice of God in our lives, and walking where he calls us,all require the discipline of prayer.
If you want to know God, and if you want to know yourself, pray. Talk to God. There are many different kinds of prayer (adoration, petition, intercession, thanksgiving), but in the end, prayer is simply conversation with God.
Don’t know where to begin? Check out the Dynamic Catholic Prayer Process.
Fasting is a spiritual exercise, and is primarily an action of the inner life. We do not fast to impress other people. We fast to cultivate the inner life. Fasting should be an occasion of joy, not a cause of sadness. Authentic fasting draws us nearer to God and opens our hearts to receive his many gifts.
Go without food for several hours and you quickly realize how truly weak, fragile, and dependent we are. This knowledge of self strips away arrogance and fosters a loving acknowledgment of our utter dependence on God.
Catholics are invited to fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. Guidelines for a day of fasting include eating only two small meals and one full meal, without eating in between meals. Those who are physically unable to fast from food are encouraged to choose something else to fast from on those days.
Catholics often do not eat meat on Fridays, especially during Lent. This is an intentional way to remember Christ's passion and death with an act of self-denial. It is generally practiced on Fridays, since that is the day that Jesus suffered and died.
Almsgiving is giving to those in need. If we open our eyes we will discover that we are surrounded by need. We are always called to be generous, but during Lent, we are invited to share the love of God with other people by being especially generous with our time, talent, and treasure.
We cannot do everything, but that doesn’t mean we should do nothing. We cannot save everyone, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t save some. Don’t let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. And what we can do, all of us, is make small sacrifices, and simplify our lives in some small ways so that others may simply live.
The following is a prayer used by the Dynamic Catholic Team. It is a prayer for transformation. Most people have never prayed a prayer of transformation. Too often when we pray, we pray for tweaking. We want God to tweak this and tweak that.
But let’s be honest. We don’t necessarily want our lives transformed. Transformation may seem attractive in a moment of blissfully holy idealistic exuberance or at a moment of crisis, but the everyday reality is we like to distance ourselves from the inner work required to bring about such a transformation.
Sure, we want some tweaking, but not transformation. This desire for tweaking is selective and selfish, while transformation is total and selfless.
We pray for tweaking—and then we wonder why God doesn’t answer our prayers. The reason is simple: God is not interested in tweaking. God is in the business of transformation. He wants to turn your life upside down, which as it turns out is right side up. If you want to see something incredible, start praying for transformation. That’s a prayer God will answer.
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Matthew Kelly has dedicated his life to helping people and organizations become the-best-version-of-themselves. He is an internationally acclaimed speaker, a bestselling author, and business consultant. His books have been published in twenty-five languages, have appeared on the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestseller lists, and have sold in excess of seven million copies. Learn more