Resurrection Parish
Catholic Church of the Resurrection
Diocese of Yakima
Lent 2020
Resurrection Parish
Iglesia católica de la Resurrección
Diócesis de Yakima

Cuaresma 2020

Ash Wednesday Mass & Distribution of Ashes February 26  7:00 am & 5:00 pm (English)

Miércoles de Ceniza Misa y distribución de cenizas 26 de febrero 6:30 pm (Español)

Stations of the Cross Each Friday of Lent at 5:00 pm  (English) Las Estaciones de la CruzTodos los viernes de Cuaresma 6:00 pm  (Español)


Traditions Practices of Lent:

(with excerpts from Building Catholic Family Traditions by Paul and Lisa Thigpen)

The season of Lent is one of the oldest traditions of the Catholic calendar. This period of time, beginning with Ash Wednesday (the Wednesday of the seventh week before Easter) and ending with Easter itself, has provided many generations of Catholics with a chance to deepen their spiritual lives through prayer, self-examination, and small acts of self-sacrifice.

At the heart of the Lenten custom is the idea of fasting, that is, of voluntarily giving up some kind of food or drink as a way of exercising self-discipline and concentrating on spiritual matters. Since Sunday is considered a day of celebration, the Sundays during this season are exempt from the fast. But the remaining forty days, recalling Jesus’ forty-day fast in the wilderness, offer us a time to give up something to God as a token of our love.

 Requirements of Fasting and Abstinence During Lent

In 1966 Pope Paul VI reorganized the Church's practice of public penance in his "Apostolic Constitution on Penance" (Poenitemini). The 1983 revision of the Code of Canon Law incorporated the changes made by Pope Paul. Not long after that, the U.S. bishops applied the canonical requirements to the practice of public penance in our country.

To sum up those requirements, Catholics between the ages of 18 and 59 are obliged to fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. In addition, all Catholics 14 years old and older must abstain from meat on Ash Wednesday, Good Friday and all the Fridays of Lent.  Pastors and parents are to see to it that minors, though not bound by the law of fast and abstinence, are educated in the authentic sense of penance and encouraged to do acts of penance suitable to their age.

Fasting as explained by the U.S. bishops means partaking of only one full meal. Some food (not equaling another full meal) is permitted at breakfast and around midday or in the evening—depending on when a person chooses to eat the main or full meal.

Abstinence forbids the use of meat, but not of eggs, milk products or condiments made of animal fat.

The Code of Canon Law and our bishops remind us of other works and means of doing penance: prayer, acts of self-denial, almsgiving and works of personal charity. Attending Mass daily or several times a week, praying the rosary, making the way of the cross, attending the parish evening prayer service, teaching the illiterate to read, reading to the blind, helping at a soup kitchen, visiting the sick and shut-ins and giving an overworked mother a break by baby-sitting, all of these can be even more meaningful and demanding than simply abstaining from meat on Friday

Shrove Tuesday. The raucous behavior that some people engage in through the days just before Lent have earned Mardi Gras a bad reputation. But we need not let our disgust at such misdeeds keep our families from observing on this day the traditional feast one last time before the long fast. Pancakes have long been a customary food for Mardi Gras: In the days when not only meat, but also eggs, milk, cooking fat, and butter were given up for Lent, what was left of these goods in the pantry was used up in a pancake supper, which is still the tradition in many homes. At the same time, we should remember that the day is also called "Shrove Tuesday" because it was customary for Catholics to be "shriven" (to receive absolution in the sacrament of Penance) on this day. This healthy tradition encourages us to begin Lent by seeking to be reconciled with God.

Ash Wednesday. This first day of Lent receives its name from the penitential ashes imposed by the priest on our foreheads in the shape of a cross. Receiving the ashes, as well as the obligatory fasting and abstinence from meat, are all important Catholic traditions whose meaning can be deepened if we take time to discuss them with our families. In some homes, a further symbolic gesture is made to signify penance, such as collecting from around the house the blessed palms from the Palm Sunday of the year before, then burn them and bury the ashes. These actions remind us that we must be purged of our sin. They also teach children that objects which have become Sacramentals through the blessing of the Church should not be thrown away like other things, but should be destroyed by natural agents.

Lenten disciplines. The Lenten sacrifice that begins on Ash Wednesday varies from person to person and from year to year. In addition to the required abstinence, sometimes we give up favorite foods, sometimes pleasurable activities. For many of us, the choice may not be to give something up, but to add something to our daily lives during Lent.  We may commit ourselves to extra prayer time.  We may decide to do some service to the poor, once a week during Lent.  We may choose to increase our almsgiving to the poor - perhaps related to something we choose not to do, e.g., some might choose not to go out to eat one night a week, and to give that total amount to the poor.

We take into consideration several factors when we each decide how we’ll fast, and we talk them over as a family:

• First, the thing we give up must be something we genuinely value, perhaps a dessert, a favorite beverage, or a cherished pastime. Otherwise, the sacrifice loses its meaning.

• Second, the sacrifice should be reasonable rather than extreme.

• Third, if possible, give up something that you’re better off avoiding for a season anyway. Sweets, soft drinks, and caffeine are foods that would fall into that category; television viewing would make a healthy choice as an activity to give up for Lent.

 The discipline of self-sacrifice is only part of the Lenten tradition. We set aside this season to bring us closer to God and to make us more like Him, so there should be a taking on of positive things as well as a giving up of others. For that reason, we make it a custom to spend extra time in regular prayer during the days of Lent, talking with God especially about the ways we need to change our lives. Families that can’t attend Mass every day throughout the year often make arrangements to do so throughout Lent. Eucharistic adoration and the Stations of the Cross are especially meaningful Lenten devotions for a family to practice together.

• One natural way to focus on positive acts of devotion is to dedicate to godly purposes whatever time or money we save from the things we give up. If we "fast" television viewing, for example, the extra time on our hands would be well spent in reading Scripture, praying, keeping a spiritual journal, or helping others. If we would normally spend a certain amount on items like dessert or soft drinks, we can collect that money in a jar on the family dining table and give it to someone in need at the end of the season.

Despite the subdued atmosphere of Lent, with its focus on repentance and its forgoing of pleasures, this tradition can bring your family a renewed sense of peace. By consciously cultivating personal spiritual growth for these few weeks, you can rediscover right priorities and the Easter celebration waiting at the end will feel more festive than ever!



Pope Francis' Lenten Message 2020

Here is the text of Pope Francis' Lenten Message for 2020.


“We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God” (2 Cor 5:20)

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

This year the Lord grants us, once again, a favourable time to prepare to celebrate with renewed hearts the great mystery of the death and resurrection of Jesus, the cornerstone of our personal and communal Christian life. We must continually return to this mystery in mind and heart, for it will continue to grow within us in the measure that we are open to its spiritual power and respond with freedom and generosity.

1. The paschal mystery as the basis of conversion

Christian joy flows from listening to, and accepting, the Good News of the death and resurrection of Jesus. This kerygma sums up the mystery of a love “so real, so true, so concrete, that it invites us to a relationship of openness and fruitful dialogue” (Christus Vivit, 117). Whoever believes this message rejects the lie that our life is ours to do with as we will. Rather, life is born of the love of God our Father, from his desire to grant us life in abundance (cf. Jn 10:10). If we listen instead to the tempting voice of the “father of lies” (Jn 8:44), we risk sinking into the abyss of absurdity, and experiencing hell here on earth, as all too many tragic events in the personal and collective human experience sadly bear witness.

In this Lent of 2020, I would like to share with every Christian what I wrote to young people in the Apostolic Exhortation Christus Vivit: “Keep your eyes fixed on the outstretched arms of Christ crucified, let yourself be saved over and over again. And when you go to confess your sins, believe firmly in his mercy which frees you of your guilt. Contemplate his blood poured out with such great love, and let yourself be cleansed by it. In this way, you can be reborn ever anew” (No. 123). Jesus’ Pasch is not a past event; rather, through the power of the Holy Spirit it is ever present, enabling us to see and touch with faith the flesh of Christ in those who suffer.

2. The urgency of conversion

It is good to contemplate more deeply the paschal mystery through which God’s mercy has been bestowed upon us. Indeed, the experience of mercy is only possible in a “face to face” relationship with the crucified and risen Lord “who loved me and gave himself for me” (Gal 2:20), in a heartfelt dialogue between friends. That is why prayer is so important in Lent. Even more than a duty, prayer is an expression of our need to respond to God’s love which always precedes and sustains us. Christians pray in the knowledge that, although unworthy, we are still loved. Prayer can take any number of different forms, but what truly matters in God’s eyes is that it penetrates deep within us and chips away at our hardness of heart, in order to convert us ever more fully to God and to his will.

In this favourable season, then, may we allow ourselves to be led like Israel into the desert (cf. Hos 2:14), so that we can at last hear our Spouse’s voice and allow it to resound ever more deeply within us. The more fully we are engaged with his word, the more we will experience the mercy he freely gives us. May we not let this time of grace pass in vain, in the foolish illusion that we can control the times and means of our conversion to him.

3. God’s passionate will to dialogue with his children

The fact that the Lord once again offers us a favourable time for our conversion should never be taken for granted. This new opportunity ought to awaken in us a sense of gratitude and stir us from our sloth. Despite the sometimes tragic presence of evil in our lives, and in the life of the Church and the world, this opportunity to change our course expresses God’s unwavering will not to interrupt his dialogue of salvation with us. In the crucified Jesus, who knew no sin, yet for our sake was made to be sin (cf. 2 Cor 5:21), this saving will led the Father to burden his Son with the weight of our sins, thus, in the expression of Pope Benedict XVI, “turning of God against himself” (Deus Caritas Est, 12). For God also loves his enemies (cf. Mt 5:43-48).

The dialogue that God wishes to establish with each of us through the paschal mystery of his Son has nothing to do with empty chatter, like that attributed to the ancient inhabitants of Athens, who “spent their time in nothing except telling or hearing something new” (Acts 17:21). Such chatter, determined by an empty and superficial curiosity, characterizes worldliness in every age; in our own day, it can also result in improper use of the media.

4. A richness to be shared, not kept for oneself

Putting the paschal mystery at the centre of our lives means feeling compassion towards the wounds of the crucified Christ present in the many innocent victims of wars, in attacks on life, from that of the unborn to that of the elderly, and various forms of violence. They are likewise present in environmental disasters, the unequal distribution of the earth’s goods, human trafficking in all its forms, and the unbridled thirst for profit, which is a form of idolatry.

Today too, there is a need to appeal to men and women of good will to share, by almsgiving, their goods with those most in need, as a means of personally participating in the building of a better world. Charitable giving makes us more human, whereas hoarding risks making us less human, imprisoned by our own selfishness. We can and must go even further, and consider the structural aspects of our economic life. For this reason, in the midst of Lent this year, from 26 to 28 March, I have convened a meeting in Assisi with young economists, entrepreneurs and change-makers, with the aim of shaping a more just and inclusive economy. As the Church’s magisterium has often repeated, political life represents an eminent form of charity (cf. Pius XI, Address to the Italian Federation of Catholic University Students, 18 December 1927). The same holds true for economic life, which can be approached in the same evangelical spirit, the spirit of the Beatitudes.

I ask Mary Most Holy to pray that our Lenten celebration will open our hearts to hear God’s call to be reconciled to himself, to fix our gaze on the paschal mystery, and to be converted to an open and sincere dialogue with him. In this way, we will become what Christ asks his disciples to be: the salt of the earth and the light of the world (cf. Mt 5:13-14).




«En nombre de Cristo os pedimos que os reconciliéis con Dios» (2 Co 5,20)

Queridos hermanos y hermanas:

El Señor nos vuelve a conceder este año un tiempo propicio para prepararnos a celebrar con el corazón renovado el gran Misterio de la muerte y resurrección de Jesús, fundamento de la vida cristiana personal y comunitaria. Debemos volver continuamente a este Misterio, con la mente y con el corazón. De hecho, este Misterio no deja de crecer en nosotros en la medida en que nos dejamos involucrar por su dinamismo espiritual y lo abrazamos, respondiendo de modo libre y generoso.

1. El Misterio pascual, fundamento de la conversión

La alegría del cristiano brota de la escucha y de la aceptación de la Buena Noticia de la muerte y resurrección de Jesús: el kerygma. En este se resume el Misterio de un amor «tan real, tan verdadero, tan concreto, que nos ofrece una relación llena de diálogo sincero y fecundo» (Exhort. ap. Christus vivit, 117). Quien cree en este anuncio rechaza la mentira de pensar que somos nosotros quienes damos origen a nuestra vida, mientras que en realidad nace del amor de Dios Padre, de su voluntad de dar la vida en abundancia (cf. Jn 10,10). En cambio, si preferimos escuchar la voz persuasiva del «padre de la mentira» (cf. Jn 8,45) corremos el riesgo de hundirnos en el abismo del sinsentido, experimentando el infierno ya aquí en la tierra, como lamentablemente nos testimonian muchos hechos dramáticos de la experiencia humana personal y colectiva.

Por eso, en esta Cuaresma 2020 quisiera dirigir a todos y cada uno de los cristianos lo que ya escribí a los jóvenes en la Exhortación apostólica Christus vivit: «Mira los brazos abiertos de Cristo crucificado, déjate salvar una y otra vez. Y cuando te acerques a confesar tus pecados, cree firmemente en su misericordia que te libera de la culpa. Contempla su sangre derramada con tanto cariño y déjate purificar por ella. Así podrás renacer, una y otra vez» (n. 123). La Pascua de Jesús no es un acontecimiento del pasado: por el poder del Espíritu Santo es siempre actual y nos permite mirar y tocar con fe la carne de Cristo en tantas personas que sufren.

2. Urgencia de conversión

Es saludable contemplar más a fondo el Misterio pascual, por el que hemos recibido la misericordia de Dios. La experiencia de la misericordia, efectivamente, es posible sólo en un «cara a cara» con el Señor crucificado y resucitado «que me amó y se entregó por mí» (Ga 2,20). Un diálogo de corazón a corazón, de amigo a amigo. Por eso la oración es tan importante en el tiempo cuaresmal. Más que un deber, nos muestra la necesidad de corresponder al amor de Dios, que siempre nos precede y nos sostiene. De hecho, el cristiano reza con la conciencia de ser amado sin merecerlo. La oración puede asumir formas distintas, pero lo que verdaderamente cuenta a los ojos de Dios es que penetre dentro de nosotros, hasta llegar a tocar la dureza de nuestro corazón, para convertirlo cada vez más al Señor y a su voluntad.

Así pues, en este tiempo favorable, dejémonos guiar como Israel en el desierto (cf. Os 2,16), a fin de poder escuchar finalmente la voz de nuestro Esposo, para que resuene en nosotros con mayor profundidad y disponibilidad. Cuanto más nos dejemos fascinar por su Palabra, más lograremos experimentar su misericordia gratuita hacia nosotros. No dejemos pasar en vano este tiempo de gracia, con la ilusión presuntuosa de que somos nosotros los que decidimos el tiempo y el modo de nuestra conversión a Él.

3. La apasionada voluntad de Dios de dialogar con sus hijos

El hecho de que el Señor nos ofrezca una vez más un tiempo favorable para nuestra conversión nunca debemos darlo por supuesto. Esta nueva oportunidad debería suscitar en nosotros un sentido de reconocimiento y sacudir nuestra modorra. A pesar de la presencia —a veces dramática— del mal en nuestra vida, al igual que en la vida de la Iglesia y del mundo, este espacio que se nos ofrece para un cambio de rumbo manifiesta la voluntad tenaz de Dios de no interrumpir el diálogo de salvación con nosotros. En Jesús crucificado, a quien «Dios hizo pecado en favor nuestro» (2 Co 5,21), ha llegado esta voluntad hasta el punto de hacer recaer sobre su Hijo todos nuestros pecados, hasta “poner a Dios contra Dios”, como dijo el papa Benedicto XVI (cf. Enc. Deus caritas est, 12). En efecto, Dios ama también a sus enemigos (cf. Mt 5,43-48).

El diálogo que Dios quiere entablar con todo hombre, mediante el Misterio pascual de su Hijo, no es como el que se atribuye a los atenienses, los cuales «no se ocupaban en otra cosa que en decir o en oír la última novedad» (Hch 17,21). Este tipo de charlatanería, dictado por una curiosidad vacía y superficial, caracteriza la mundanidad de todos los tiempos, y en nuestros días puede insinuarse también en un uso engañoso de los medios de comunicación.

4. Una riqueza para compartir, no para acumular sólo para sí mismo

Poner el Misterio pascual en el centro de la vida significa sentir compasión por las llagas de Cristo crucificado presentes en las numerosas víctimas inocentes de las guerras, de los abusos contra la vida tanto del no nacido como del anciano, de las múltiples formas de violencia, de los desastres medioambientales, de la distribución injusta de los bienes de la tierra, de la trata de personas en todas sus formas y de la sed desenfrenada de ganancias, que es una forma de idolatría.

Hoy sigue siendo importante recordar a los hombres y mujeres de buena voluntad que deben compartir sus bienes con los más necesitados mediante la limosna, como forma de participación personal en la construcción de un mundo más justo. Compartir con caridad hace al hombre más humano, mientras que acumular conlleva el riesgo de que se embrutezca, ya que se cierra en su propio egoísmo. Podemos y debemos ir incluso más allá, considerando las dimensiones estructurales de la economía. Por este motivo, en la Cuaresma de 2020, del 26 al 28 de marzo, he convocado en Asís a los jóvenes economistas, empresarios y change-makers, con el objetivo de contribuir a diseñar una economía más justa e inclusiva que la actual. Como ha repetido muchas veces el magisterio de la Iglesia, la política es una forma eminente de caridad (cf. Pío XI, Discurso a la FUCI, 18 diciembre 1927). También lo será el ocuparse de la economía con este mismo espíritu evangélico, que es el espíritu de las Bienaventuranzas.

Invoco la intercesión de la Bienaventurada Virgen María sobre la próxima Cuaresma, para que escuchemos el llamado a dejarnos reconciliar con Dios, fijemos la mirada del corazón en el Misterio pascual y nos convirtamos a un diálogo abierto y sincero con el Señor. De este modo podremos ser lo que Cristo dice de sus discípulos: sal de la tierra y luz del mundo (cf. Mt 5,13-14).




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