PORTLAND — Lent, which begins Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Thursday, is a period of spiritual renewal that helps us prepare for the celebration of the Paschal mystery of Christ — that is, his passion, death and resurrection. The three pillars of the Lenten season are prayer, fasting and almsgiving. By spending time in prayer and in reflection on the Scriptures, through penance and through giving up (sacrificial acts) and giving to others (charitable acts), we look to experience a spiritual reawakening that brings us closer to Christ.
A special Lent section has been launched on the Diocese of Portland website featuring a variety of resources (portlanddiocese.org/lent-resources). In the section, you can find:
- Mass times for Ash Wednesday and Holy Week
- Scripture study and other faith-enriching offerings at parishes
- Retreat and parish mission opportunities
- A schedule of Lenten meals planned for around Maine
- A schedule for “The Light is On for You,” an initiative offering multiple opportunities for confession at all Maine parishes
- A schedule for Living Stations of the Cross and traditional Stations of the Cross
- A schedule of prayer opportunities
- “Echoing God’s Word in the Catholic Community,” a rich scriptural, theological, and pastoral resource from the late Fr. Clement Thibodeau
- Educational resources on Lent, fasting and abstinence, reconciliation, and other topics
- “Saints of Lent,” with descriptions of saints whose feast days fall within the Lenten season
- Lectio Divina in English and Spanish
- A “Sharing Our Gifts” section including information about CRS Rice Bowl, Catholic Charities Maine, and how you can evangelize during Lent
- Messages from Pope Francis
The section will be updated throughout Lent with updates and additional events as they are confirmed. Stories, pictures and videos from many Masses, services, and events throughout Lent will be posted on the diocesan website (portlanddiocese.org), Facebook page (facebook.com/PortlandDiocese) and Twitter page (twitter.com/PortlandDiocese).