This week the season of Lent begins on Ash Wednesday, February 10th. While every Lent is a significant time in the life of the Church, this year it takes on a special significance in this Jubilee Year of Mercy. Lent is especially a time to seek God’s mercy and find strength for a renewed commitment to our baptismal vocation. Lent during this Holy Year will feature a few special celebrations.
24 Hours for the Lord. Pope Francis has called for us to set aside the Friday and Saturday before the Fourth Sunday of Lent (March 4-5) as a special time of prayer and penance. Our deanery will celebrate these 24 Hours for the Lord at the Goldsmith Chapel from noon on March 4 to noon on March 5. Each parish will be responsible for leading prayer throughout the observance and volunteers will be needed to be present before the Blessed Sacrament throughout the night hours. Please watch the bulletin for more details on this special event.
The Sacrament of Reconciliation. We’ve already initiated extra time for confessions on Mondays at St. Charles from 5 – 5:30 pm. The week of March 13th there will be communal penance celebrations throughout our deanery. During Holy Week confessions will be heard on Monday evening at St. Charles and Tuesday evening at St. Peter’s. Please plan now to take advantage of these opportunities for sacramental confession during Lent!
Anointing of the Sick. Next Tuesday, February 16, there will be a special Mass with Anointing of the Sick at 11:00 am at St. Charles. Lunch will follow in the Narthex. All are invited to join us for this special celebration of the Lord’s healing power. The Anointing of the Sick will also be celebrated at various area nursing home and assisted living centers during the month of February.
Stations of the Cross. This devotion will be prayed at St. Charles on Sundays at 7:00 pm and Mondays at 5:00 pm. At St. Peter’s the Stations will be prayed on Monday as part of the Novena devotions at 6:00 pm and on Thursdays at noon with the school children.
Alpha. We’re currently running our Alpha Course at St. Charles on Mondays at 6:15 pm and at St. Peter’s on Tuesdays at 6:00 pm. You can still take advantage of Alpha starting this week. The topic is “Why Did Jesus Die?” Those who have participated in the Alpha sessions but did not make the Weekend Away are invited to join us March 12-13 in Black River Falls. Contact Greg Gilbertson for more information.
May the coming Lenten season be a time of renewal for us all as together we celebrate the Lord’s merciful love!