Notable quotations from Pope Francis and official teachings of the Roman Catholic Church
Lent is a new beginning, a path leading to the certain goal of Easter, Christ's victory over death. This season urgently calls us to conversion. Christians are asked to return to God "with all their hearts" (Joel 2:12), to refuse to settle for mediocrity and to grow in friendship with Jesus.
Lent is a favorable season for deepening our spiritual life through the means of sanctification offered us by the Church: fasting, prayer and almsgiving.
At the basis of everything is the word of God, which during this season we are invited to hear and ponder more deeply.
Lent is a favorable season for opening the doors to all in need and recognizing in them the face of Christ. Each of us meets people like this every day. Each life we encounter is a gift deserving acceptance, respect and love. The word of God helps us to open our eyes to welcome and love life especially when it is weak and vulnerable.
The word of God is alive and powerful, capable of converting hearts and leading them back to God. When we close our heart to the gift of God's word, we end up closing our heart to the gift of our brothers and sisters.
Lent is the favorable season for renewing our encounter with Christ, living in His word, in the sacraments and in our neighbor.
May the Holy Spirit lead us on a true journey of conversion, so that we can rediscover the gift of God's word, be purified of the sin that blinds us, and serve Christ present in our brothers and sisters in need.
I encourage all the faithful to express this spiritual renewal ... by sharing in the Lenten Campaigns promoted by many Church organizations in different parts of the world, and thus to favor the culture of encounter in our one human family.
Let us pray for one another so that, by sharing in the victory of Christ, we may open our doors to the weak and poor. Then we will be able to experience and share the full joy of Easter.
(Source: Message for Lent 2017, dated 10/18/2016)
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