Pope Francis sends Lenten message

Pope Francis sends Lenten message

As Lenten season arrives, Pope Francis has sent a message to the Church, exhorting her members to observe it as a season of penance and a synodal journey.

Writing to the whole Church a message for lent in the 2023, Pope Francis recounts the transfiguration episode as narrated in the Gospels of Mark, Luke and Matthew, and makes it the foundation of His message.

He reckons in the Lenten season the Lord will take the faithful apart just as he did with the three disciples. In this, the Pope reflects on the commitments that people have and their daily routines which may hinder them from having the full experience of lent. “During Lent we are invited to ascend “a high mountain” in the company of Jesus and to live a particular experience of spiritual discipline – ascesis – as God’s holy people.” Reads the message.

In making reference to the transfiguration narrative, the Pope recalls the lack of faith and resistance to following Jesus in the way of the cross, and affirms that this is the challenge that Christians face today as well. For the apostles to understand this, they had to go on a journey with Jesus to the mountain. Thus, Christians ought to make the same journey this Lenten season.

Citing particular episodes of the glorified appearance of Jesus, the call to listen to his son given in the voice, the fear that filled their apostles, the Holy Father calls on all to take and put on a new nature, listen to Christ who is the Lord, and not to be fearful consequently taking refuge in religiosity made up of extraordinary events. Rather the Christian journey in lent should be one that walks with Jesus towards his passion and death so as to attain salvation.

As he commands his disciples to rise, the Church is called upon to rose and walk in synodality in this journey here on earth.

Lent is a liturgical season in the Catholic Church when Christians commemorate the passion and death of Jesus Christ. It is observed over a period of forty days beginning with Ash Wednesday till the Good Friday.

Fruitful Lenten season to all.