The season of Lent is not just for Catholics anymore. Here`s a press release from President Obama, found on one of the National Catholic Reporter blogs,
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 9, 2011
Statement by the President on Ash Wednesday
Michelle and I join with millions of Christians here and across the world to mark Ash Wednesday. As we observe the season of Lent, we receive with thanksgiving this opportunity for grace and repentance, recommit ourselves to our faith, and remember our obligations to one another.
David Hitt on his blog, Stories in My Pocket writes about the benefits of Lenten practices. Though not a Catholic, he chose to give something up last Lent. This year, he is focusing on doing something positive.
Though not intentional, the philosophy of Lent is reflected in the hugely successful novel and subsequent movie, Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. She describes her year of embracing the sheer joys of food, the discipline of prayer, and the balance of mind, body and soul. Isn`t this what Lent is all about? Granted, Lent is more about fasting then feasting. But anyone who has fasted or gone on a diet knows there`s no better way to appreciate the glorious taste of rich foods! Praying nudges us to be still and spend time on our relationship with the Holy One. And alms-giving is all about balance – correcting the inequalities in our world.
As Catholics, we can easily become complacent about our traditions and rituals. It is always good to see the old with new eyes, and rediscover the rich gifts that they offer to us. Here`s to a fruitful and blessed Lent!