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Association of the Miraculous Medal
Gospel Reflection for March 10
Fr. Luke passed away on August 10. Prior to his illness, he had prepared gospel reflections for each Sunday of the Liturgical year. We will continue to share his wisdom and faith.
Besides her great privilege of being the Mother of God, Mary was also her Son’s first disciple. She is often called the Model, or Exemplar of the Church. Following her example, we walk with her through the Gospels as we reflect on her response to God in her life.

March 10, 2019—First Sunday of Lent

  Luke 4:1-13

Father Oscar Lukefahr, C.M.

The pastor ended his give-up-something-for-Lent sermon: “As an act of penitence, we will worship in an unheated church during Lent.” After Mass the congregation filed out of church into the chill February air, and the pastor addressed an elderly woman, “Mrs. James, what will you give up for Lent?” She looked him in the eye and replied firmly, “Church.”

Lent is certainly not giving up church! Lent is about imitating Jesus, who began his ministry with penance and prayer, and then brought God’s love to the world. Satan tempted Jesus to reject penance by changing stones into bread. He tempted Jesus to stop praying that God’s come, and instead accept worldly kingdoms for himself. Satan tried to distract Jesus from his mission of love by having him perform a showy stunt, focusing attention on himself. Jesus rejected Satan, and we imitate Jesus when we see Lent as an opportunity for penance, prayer, and works of love. Here are some suggestions:

PENANCE: Penance is turning away from sin, and turning toward Jesus. He gave us the sacrament of Penance for this purpose. Jesus teaches us to take up the cross each day and follow in his footsteps. Every day brings its share of inconveniences, physical ailments, and irritations. Jesus invites us to take up these crosses with a smile, and follow him.

PRAYER: Attend Mass and receive Communion more frequently, daily if possible. Spend more time in prayer alone, with your family, and in parish prayers like the Stations of the Cross. Read the Bible daily. Be attentive to Mary, who shared so intimately in Christ's sufferings. Pray the Rosary daily.

CHARITY: Share with the poor any money saved by fasting. Make sacrificial gifts to the work of the Church. Visit the sick and the elderly. Be kind to family members. Strive to be polite to all. Pray for your enemies. If you are at odds with a relative, neighbor, or co-worker, try to make peace.

Don’t give up church for Lent! Join Jesus in penance, prayer, and works of charity, and be filled with the warmth of his grace.

Read last week's reflection.