The Season of Lent is one of both joy and serious reflection. It has some interesting 4th-century historical roots. The 40-day duration evolved from what originally had been a two-day paschal fast in observance of Easter. In our own time, the Second Vatican Council brought out the “baptismal” nature of Lent. Vatican II restored the Catechumenate with its many Lenten rituals culminating with Baptism at the Easter Vigil. As the elect prepare themselves for Baptism, the rest of the community accompanies them on the journey, ultimately renewing their own baptismal vows at the same Vigil ceremony.
Lent paints the big picture of God’s covenant love in salvation history from Genesis to Jesus. Beginning with Ash Wednesday and ending with Easter Sunday, each day is designed to deepen the Lenten experience. This Lent, my hope is that you will catch a new vision of the eternal Father who never fails to fulfill his word. No matter what obstacles arise, he never loses sight of his goal: to form and fashion a human family to share in the infinite love of the Trinity. As you consider how God has fathered his people over the ages, hopefully you will realize more fully how great God’s love is for you as a member of his covenant family.