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Lenten Reflection: Mary Nolan, BVM

Perhaps a seed was planted in my soul early on when my dad, a devout Catholic who rarely quoted scripture would say: “What does it profit a man/woman to gain the whole world and suffer the loss of his/her immortal soul?” This always started me thinking, especially on Ash Wednesday.

For me, Lent is an opportunity to pause and pay attention to my relationships with the Triune God; my family; my religious community; and friends or strangers that cross my path. As we begin this Lenten journey let us pray with the psalmist:

Create in me a clean heart, O Gracious One,

and put a new and right spirit

within me.

Enfold me in the arms of love, and

fill me with your Holy Spirit.

Restore in me the joy of your saving grace,

and encourage me with a new spirit” (Psalm 51, Nan C. Merrill).

What seeds were planted in your soul at even a young age? Did the seeds of solitude, silence, Scripture, and prayer lead to a good Lent?

In the quiet, I remember that I am a creature, loved unconditionally by the Creator, Redeemer, and Sanctifier. I am the adopted daughter of the Most-High God. I trust in this relationship and hope that it enables me to reach out to others because love is repaid by love alone. Lent calls me to journey within so that I can extend a hand to others on the journey.

At the end of each day, let us ponder the Prophet Micah’s words to examine what living the Lenten journey can mean:

This is what Yahweh asks of you:

…act justly,

 …love tenderly,

…walk humbly

with your God” (Micah 6:8).

This Post Has 10 Comments
  1. Thanks, Mary, for this solid reflection. Those seeds planted long ago keep prodding us,spurring us on.

  2. Thank you for this superb Ash Wednesday blog post. The observation that “love is repaid by love alone” is a vital insight for the Lenten season and always. Your emphasis on Lent being an opportunity to look inward so that we can reach out to others on the journey is truly inspiring!

    1. Mary, thanks so much for your reflection
      that reminds me so much of God’s love
      and my response that is needed.

  3. Mary, thanks so much for this beautiful reflection, which invites us this Lent to both an inward and an outward journey…

  4. Mary, your Dad’s quote is one of my favorite quotes as I travel my life-journey. Thank you for reminding me at the beginning of this Lenten season.

  5. Thanks, Mary for your Lent reflections. It called me to remember my family and friends who have gone before me and on whose shoulders I stand. They have helped ground me in a life of silence, prayer and action.

  6. Better late than never, I finally read your beautiful reflection on Lent Mary. Thank you for sharing your wonderful insights. Blessed Holy Week and Easter!

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