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February 18, 2015
Dear Members of the Prep Community,
Once, in college, I remember a campus minister telling a group of us that Lent was inherently joyful. I was skeptical, to say the least. Lent is a time of repentance and fasting, of somber prayer, I thought. Any season that starts with a startling reminder of our own mortality should not be a joyful season!
However, as I’ve grown in my faith and my understanding of this holy season, I find myself agreeing with that campus minister more and more. Lent, and its intentional practices of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving, are meant to draw us closer to God. And, as Fr. Jim Martin, SJ said in a recent interview on the On Being podcast, “the people who are most in touch with God are those who are joyful, and vice versa.” It is when we are able to truly understand our dependence on God that our hearts are opened to the many ways He is working in our lives. Our Lenten practices that seem to weigh us down are truly meant to free us to become our best selves - most connected to Christ and Christ in the people around us.
This year, the entire Prep faculty and staff will aim to draw closer to Christ by participating in Igniting Our Values, a daily prayer experience hosted by the Jesuits of the United States. Many different contributors, both clergy and lay, from Jesuit apostolates across the country have offered prayers and reflections for this program. If you would like to participate in this program along with us, you can click here to sign up to receive the daily prayers and reflections. They are offered in both English and Spanish. We hope that this program invites you into prayer in a meaningful way and makes Lent a joyful season for you!
Additionally, please see below for some of the ways we will be focusing on the themes of Lent here at Prep.
In the joy of Christ,
Director of Campus Ministry
Saint Peter’s Prep Campus Ministry Lent Activities
We will distribute Lenten Resource Sheets to all members of the Prep community each week with prayers and reflection questions pertinent to Lenten themes.
Catholic Volunteer Network has put together a Lenten Reflection Guide, which includes reflections, prayers, and tips based on each week's Gospel reading. Each reflection is written by a different contributor, and each offering their unique insights and experiences.
The Ignatian Solidarity Network is offering a Lenten reflection series focusing on care for God’s creation, in anticipation of Pope Francis’ encyclical on the topic this year. It is called “Renewing the Face of the Earth” and you can sign up to receive their daily reflections in their inbox here.
The Catholic online magazine Busted Halo has created a Fast, Pray, Give Lenten Calendar offering new and practical ideas for fasting, prayer, and almsgiving for each day of Lent.
Prayer and Liturgy
We will continue to offer lunchtime masses twice a cycle: Tuesdays for juniors and seniors and Thursdays for freshmen and sophomores.
We will offer Reconciliation Services for Freshmen and Juniors during 2nd period and Community Period on two different mornings in Lent. Freshmen will participate on March 9 and juniors will participate on March 16.
We will move through the Stations of the Cross as a Prep community on Tuesday, March 31 before we are dismissed for the Easter break.
Service and Justice
The Office of Student Life began the annual Mission Drive on Tuesday, February 10 and it will run through Friday, April 10. Our donations support our partner agencies in Quito, Ecuador, Los Angeles, CA, and Bethel, AK.
Our annual Arrupe Week will take place from Monday March 23 through March 27. The topic for this year is “Masculinity” and the full schedule can be found here.
Two groups of sophomores will participate in their Sophomore Retreat during Lent. They will serve members of our community who are in need this season at PERC Shelter, our Prep Food Pantry, and Saint Ann’s Home for the Aged. The retreats will take place February 27-28 and March 20-21.
Lastly, 31 members of the Class of 2015 will attend Emmaus 277 from March 14-16 at St. Mary’s Abbey in Morristown, NJ. This retreat will give members of the senior class the chance to focus on where God has been present in their journey through Prep.