VEE: In some religious communities their act of reverence, such as genuflecting, is the same before the exposed and reposed Blessed Sacrament as they see Him equally, fully present and make no distinction based on how much one can see of the Host. Similarly for me, Lent, Advent, etc. are not confined to one part of the year but are present everyday. For example, one hour I'm welcoming Him into my heart as Savior, like on Palm Sunday, and several hours later I've deserted and denied Him. It seems as though I go through the trials and joys of the whole liturgical year everyday, although some days it may be more or less prominent. When Lent ends, some people rejoice in that, their sacrifices are over, no more giving up stuff, and go back to their old ways. Its not supposed to be that way...we're not supposed to go back to the old ways...Lent is supposed to change us...sacrifice is a part of life...giving alms shouldn't stop. Mortifications shouldn't stop. The trials and tribulations of walking in the desert for 40 days don't automatically end...hopefully after "practice," (Lent,) we'll be stronger...
DS: We are at the end of Lent and now beginning the Triduum. It begins on Holy Thursday with the Mass of the Last Supper.
Some of you readers may be surprised that Vee came to visit me and we had a little vacation during the holiest days of the year. I kept thinking about how inappropriate it was, only to be reminded of why we took the mini-vacation. It has to do with what Vee explained up above. Lent for her is every day. Her mother is dying... if Vee could just take a few days off from that reality, as well as the hustle and bustle of her active life, I was more than happy to welcome her. I would call this trip "an oasis in the desert," and I don't believe Jesus was offended by it. During this trip Vee and I went to Mass together, prayed together, pilgrimaged to various churches in the area. During her visit, I experienced an intense grace from God in the Sacrament of Reconciliation, and I found myself overcoming some weaknesses. I feel this is the most important gift I could give Jesus: a contrite heart and a contrite spirit, rather than sacrifices and oblations. But in reality, He gave this gift to me, not I to Him.
As we enter into the holiest days of the season, the suffering, the pain, and even the joys of this Lent all mingle together and provide a backdrop for what we are preparing for next: the Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ. I pray that all of you will provide a place for Jesus to rest His weary head this Triduum...and afterwards, when the sadness of the next days are behind us, glorify Him and praise Him in the Resurrection!