Lent begins each year with the account of the temptations of Jesus in the wilderness. We enter these Forty Days spiritually with Him, seeking inner purification and conversion. Each of us has need of this process as does the whole Church at this time. However, holiness begins with each of us individually and resolutely turning again toward The Lord. The way we do this is personal, but because we are members of Christ’s Body, the Church, it is also achieved as a family. May each of us live these days of grace with the realisation that we are children of God, Who calls us into deeper relationship with Him here and now, by prayer, fasting and works of mercy.
This weekend we are celebrating in our Parish the Solemnity of Our Lady of Lourdes. When 11th February falls on a Sunday we have the opportunity to celebrate this feast on a larger scale. This date marks the day of the first of eighteen apparitions of Mary to Bernadette in 1858. We commend to Our Blessed Mother each year on this day, all the members of the Parish Family, especially the sick and suffering and those in any special need. Following 11.30am Mass this Sunday there will be a drinks reception in the Parish Centre; all are welcome!
The Gospel of this Sunday tells of the cure of a man possessed by the devil. We have to remain on watch so that the wiles of the evil one do not mislead or enslave us. One of the worse forms of this entrapment is the attitude of apathy and lukewarmness; the overwhelming sense that it doesn’t matter, that there is no urgency, that we can make-do as we are.