Yet even now, says the Lord, return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping and with mourning; mend your hearts and not your clothing. Return to the Lord, your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, and relents from punishing.
This famous passage of scripture proclaimed each Ash Wednesday provides the themes and sets the environment for the holy season of Lent. In its wisdom the Christian church provides its members a forty day period of preparation, emphasizing prayer, fasting, and almsgiving, for the great celebration of the Paschal Mystery, the passion, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. We who are privileged to bear the name Christian must use this annual time of renewal to reconnect ourselves to our God, the source of all that is good. Through a process of study, reflection, and discussion on the scripture passages that the church uses in its Sunday celebrations during this special time, an environment can be provided for us to discover and foster the renewal we all need. It is hoped that Walking the Journey of Lent: Reflections on the Scriptures for Cycle A provides this specific opportunity.
This Lenten Bible study can be a helpful and effective way for groups and individuals to reflect upon the scriptures and through this process prepare ourselves better for the greatest of all celebrations, Easter, when Jesus rises from the dead and brings all Christians the possibility of salvation. Like any effort in life that is meritorious, this Bible study will require some effort, but it need not and should not be a burden. Rather, in sharing with others, and allowing the Spirit of God to flow through us, we can come to greater insights as to what the scriptures might mean for us and how, most importantly, we can apply them to our lives.
Negotiating The Hurdles Of Life
Allowing God To Change Us
Christ Gives Us Hope
Seeking The Light Of Christ
Jesus Unchains Us
Richard Gribble, CSC, is a Catholic priest in the Congregation of Holy Cross. He has served at St. John Vianney in Goodyear, Arizona, and as the acting superior at Moreau Seminary at the University of Notre Dame. Father Gribble earned his Ph.D. from The Catholic University of America, and has also earned degrees from the United States Naval Academy, the University of Southern California, and the Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley. He is the author of several books and over 100 articles.