#40 day challenge

Maybe if Jesus said challenge in front of 40 days people would actually do it…


Sophia Tranchitella

Ms. Adams’s Lenten display

Sophia Tranchitella, Staff Reporter

I was originally planning to go around and ask people what they gave up for Lent and why. I thought I was going to get good, genuine responses because people either were raised Catholic or grew up in a Catholic school, but I was wrong…  Many claimed they either forgot about it, didn’t even do it, or didn’t show any care for it. I then reached out to the 9th and 10th-grade theology teacher, Ms. Adams, who had good insights on how some younger adults might not be as into Lent as others. She says, “The people they hang out with don’t think it’s important or make fun of it, and we are all easily influenced by our friends and peers. Comfort is easier than sacrifice and change. If you haven’t had an experience of encountering Christ and really having a relationship with Him, then prioritizing faith in Him is hard to do”.

Lent is not a time when we just stop eating meat on Friday or just give up something for 40 days; people don’t really understand the true meaning of it. As Ms. Adams says, “Lent is a time that can help us become more like Christ while growing closer to Christ.  Giving up things (fasting), praying more or in new ways, doing acts of love (almsgiving), and going to Confession to receive the grace to resist temptation are all ways we can imitate Christ”. There are other reasons why we participate in Lent.  First, the dates for Lent are Wednesday, February 22 – Thursday, April 6. Why is it important and why does it mean so much to people and to Jesus?  Lent is 40 days during the time when Jesus went into the wilderness and was tempted.  The beginning of Lent is Ash Wednesday, when we reflect and prepare for the celebration of Easter Sunday.  It is a season where we set aside either bad habits or stuff we need a break from. We set that aside to remember the love of our God and our savior, Jesus Christ, and how God poured out through him on the cross till his death. The appropriate rules for Lent are people 18-59 and in reasonable health condition must fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. Also, ages 14 and older must give up meat every Friday of the season of Lent.

I was interested in hearing from the point of view of a priest and seeing what they have to say about Lent, so I interviewed our priest, Father Blood. These are his thoughts on this topic, “Lent is a season of preparation.  We are called to partake in penance, fasting, and almsgiving which knocks down the walls of monotony to shake us awake to what is coming.  I liken it to ringing the bells at mass; ‘look alive everyone, something is happening’.  On Good Friday we will commemorate the fact that Jesus, the Son of God, has laid down his life out of love for you.  That solemn day leads us to the celebration on Easter that the God-man has risen from the dead.  I would say to those struggling to find something to do differently during Lent–start small.  Find some small way you can remind yourself that this season is meant to feel different.  You could add a little prayers start your day, try and save an extra few dollars during the week to donate to a cause, or like many of us have done since we were little, choose something we enjoy to fast from this season.”

This is no judgment for anyone who didn’t give up anything for Lent; however, this is just a reminder of what we do and how we can become better Catholics and strengthen our beliefs in God and Jesus Christ. Try and reflect more on how Jesus died and suffered for us on the cross and then try and find something you could sacrifice just for Lent. I mean, it’s not like it’s giving up something for eternity.