PLANNING
  1. First readings for Lent in Cycle B focus our attention on covenants with God. This week we hear about God’s covenant with Noah after the flood. Next Sunday we will hear of God’s covenant with Abraham and his descendants. The Third Sunday of Lent brings us the terms of the covenant God made with Moses after the Exodus. The first reading for the Fourth Sunday of Lent sees the destruction of Jerusalem and the Israelites’ exile as a result of unfaithfulness to the covenant.
  2. Of course, this theme will only last for the first two Sundays if you have catechumens ready for the final stage of their preparation for the Easter sacraments. In that case, the readings for the Third, Fourth and Fifth Sundays of Lent will come from Cycle A, at least at whatever Masses you celebrate the scrutinies.
  3. If you have such catechumens in your faith community, this First Sunday of Lent is the day to celebrate the Rite of Sending of the Catechumens for Election. This rite, an optional rite for the United States, helps to link the whole parish with the celebration of the Rite of Election with the bishop, commonly celebrated at the cathedral and/or a centrally located parish later in the day. The rubrics and texts for the Rite of Sending are found in the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults, beginning at #106.
  4. One of the major deficits in the implementation of the RCIA in many parishes is the lack of involvement of the whole parish in the journey of the candidates. If your parish has involved the whole community throughout the process, then this rite offers an opportunity for the parish to share in this key moment in the catechumen’s journey of faith. If you haven’t adequately involved the community throughout the whole process, it’s still important to do so during Lent.
  5. Remember that Lent developed in conjunction with these final days of the catechumenate in ancient times. The whole community joined with the “elect” (as catechumens who have been called to the sacraments by the bishop are now called) to deepen their own conversion, so that they could richly celebrate the renewal of their own baptism at Easter. The journey of the elect and the Lenten journey of the already baptized merge into a shared experience of repentance and renewal
  6. Even if you don’t have any catechumens in your own parish, try to find ways to help parishioners link their Lenten practices with the elect’s spiritual journey. Can you gather names of the elect in neighboring parishes and pray for them throughout Lent? Might your parishioners write short letters to those preparing for the Easter sacraments, offering their prayers and support?
Adapted: LAWRENCE MICK ©2018: The pastoral/worship planning resource from 2018 Reflections, 2020 Reflections can be read at National Catholic Reporter website.
OUR SUNDAY READINGS
  • Reflection for June 13, The 11th Sunday in Ordinary Time
    by eezell3 on Saturday, June 12, 2021

    When I was about a year old my mother took a picture of me sitting on my father’s lap. I’m holding a book open in front of me, a picture book on the English alphabet. My father is looking down, his mouth open as if he’s reading to me. If you look closely at the

  • Study Guide for June 20, The 12th Sunday in Ordinary Time
    by eezell3 on Wednesday, June 9, 2021

    Here’s a link to the Sunday readings for June 20 (usccb.org). Sample Commentary on Mark 4:35-41 Jesus earlier revealed his power over evil and sickness. When he cast a demon out of a man (1:23-27), he spoke almost the same words that he speaks here to the storm. In both cases Jesus rebukes the forces

PRO-LIFE MESSAGE

Lent is a time to remember that God first reached out to us. This was not a meagre, one-time gesture like those we often make and withdraw, but a profound, lasting and healing covenant. During this season, we reflect on and ask forgiveness for our own alienating, sinful actions. We ponder in deep prayer and silence that God has invested everything, including a beloved Son, into this relationship.

CATHOLIC MORAL THEOLOGY
  • Seeds of Eternal Life in the Soil of Ordinary Time
    by Patrick Clark on Wednesday, June 9, 2021

    11th Sunday in Ordinary Time This Sunday’s readings may be found here at the USCCB’s website: Ezekiel 17:22-24 Psalm 92:2-3,13-14,15-16 II Corinthians 5:6-10 Mark 4:26-34 It can be tempting to think that the Bible is primarily about eternal truths or “religious beliefs,” particularly when one sets out to offer to others an interpretation of its

  • Lectionary: Corpus Christi Sunday
    by Patrick Clark on Friday, June 4, 2021

    All the readings for the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ may be found here on the USCCB website. Exodus 24:3-8 Responsorial Psalm: 116:12-13, 15-16, 17-18 Hebrews 9:11-15 Sequence: Lauda Sion Mark 14:12-16, 22-26 _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ This post was originally written by Beth Haile on June 5th, 2012 under the title “Solemnity

  • Lectionary: Trinity Sunday: Mysterious No Longer?
    by David Cloutier on Thursday, May 27, 2021

    Too often, the Trinity is presented as a mystery, and sometimes this sense of mystery is simply presented as a puzzle. The Trinity can’t really be explained, because God can’t really be explained. It’s all a great mystery. We have to take it on faith. For all the ways in which those statements are obviously

  • Lectionary: Pentecost
    by Conor Kelly on Wednesday, May 19, 2021

    Acts 2:1-11 Psalm 104:1, 24, 29-30, 31, 34 1 Cor 12:3b-7, 12-13 Jn 20:19-23 The feast of Pentecost is sometimes described as the “birthday of the Church,” because it marks the commissioning of a new community that has a special responsibility to carry on the mission of Jesus after he has returned to heaven (a

  • Lectionary: Jesus’ Wager and the Time in Between
    by Emily Reimer-Barry on Friday, May 14, 2021

    This is a guest post by Dr. Victor Carmona, Assistant Professor at the University of San Diego. The readings for the Solemnity of the Ascension of our Lord can be found here on the USCCB website. First Reading – Acts 1:1-11 Responsorial Psalm – Ps 47:2-3, 6-7, 8-9 Second Reading – Eph 1:17-23, or 4:1-13,