Lent is the 40-day season of preparation for the Paschal Triduum (Holy Thursday to Easter Sunday). The word “Lent” comes from the same root as the Angelo-Saxon word “lengthen”. It was a word for springtime when the daytime lengthens rapidly. Therefore, Lent is in essence the Church’s springtime.
We are encouraged to look at this period of Lent as a journey. Lent reminds us that this is the season to turn away from our worldly distractions and journey home to God. This should be a time of inner reflection, and at the end of the Lenten journey, we should expect to find ourselves at a different place spiritually than when we started. At the end of our Lenten journey, if we have truly humbled and submitted ourselves to the Lord, the grace of God working in our lives should have conformed us more perfectly to the image of Christ, who is, himself, the image and likeness of God the Father.
“By the solemn forty days of Lent, the Church unites herself each year to the mystery of Jesus in the desert.”
CATECHISM OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH, 540
In order to assist us on our Lenten journey and to provide an opportunity for fellowship, the diocese publishes a Lenten Program book each year that includes daily reflections from Ash Wednesday to Easter Sunday for personal reflection in addition to longer-form Sunday Gospel reflections, spiritual direction, Gospel readings, responsorial psalms, prayers and reflection questions that are traditionally part of group Lenten programs. The book also includes beautiful artwork from the Masters with accompanying artwork reflections.
The Lenten Program book is accompanied by a Triple CD resource that includes responsorial psalms songs recorded especially for the program as well as audio narrations of the Sunday Gospel readings and Sunday Gospel reflections and spiritual direction.
The diocese’s Lenten Program continue to grow in popularity each year with 20,000 copies sold throughout Australia and increasingly around the world. The books and CD’s are also given for free to thousands of inmates in prisons throughout Australia as an outreach program.