During Lent the Church calls on us in a special way to prepare our hearts and to purify our souls so that we can be ready to commemorate the most important events in all of human history: the Passion, death, and Resurrection of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Our eternal destiny — whether we spend eternity with God or without Him, in happiness or in misery, in Heaven or in Hell — depends on how we respond to those events!
Let us use this season of Lent to get closer to God, maybe closer than ever before, so that you can be what God created you to be: living signs, living witnesses, living instruments of His infinite love to the world.
Lent is a time when there should be one thing at the forefront of our minds — the salvation of our immortal souls. We must ask ourselves: Do I really believe that only God can totally satisfy the desires of my heart? It is, has been, and forever will be the case that only God can give us the kind of true peace and joy and happiness that we are searching for. Material goods cannot do that. Money cannot do that. Human relationships cannot do that. Only God can do it! God wants us to experience His infinite love and mercy and to respond to Him in a spirit of Christian joy.
We live in a time of great uncertainty. In fact, a great deal of the instability we see in the news and in our own communities finds its source in the moral and spiritual confusion of our culture. Our civilization needs a spiritual revival.
This spiritual renewal, however, cannot be imposed from above: It has to begin with us. It has to begin in our humble and contrite hearts because the world is never going to change unless there is first a change in the human heart. The world is never going to change for the better unless we are good. More precisely, the world is never going to be good unless we are holy. That was the central message of the Second Vatican Council more than five decades ago, and it’s a lesson that has been lost by many Catholics today.
What is the best way to begin this process of individual spiritual renewal? If you haven’t done so already in the season of Lent, the best way to begin is by making a good examination of conscience and a good Confession. The state of grace, to which we are restored by the grace of the sacrament, is the starting point for any personal renewal — and therefore is the starting point for the renewal of the world.
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