When Sophia posted this yesterday I was too weary to engage, but its a topic that really does bear consideration in a Lent in which I've found myself changed in a moment from initiaor/doer to --- something that feels disturbingly like a lump of cold porridge. So here's my attempt at a mid-Lent health-check (with apologies if the formatting, which is currently refusing to behave at all).
The pastor of my grad school parish once gave a fascinating reflection, at about this mid-point in the season, called "How to Survive the Mid-Lent Crisis"! As I recall, his main point was that by halfway through the season we have often found it very challenging to live up to our original plans....But, he suggested--on the analogy of the healing and reframing of our life plans that can happen during a mid-*life* crisis--that that can be even more fruitful.
So here's an invitation to check in on the state of your spirit midway through "this joyful season where we prepare to celebrate the paschal mystery with mind and heart renewed" (Roman Missal). Hopefully there's a good deal of grace, and not too much crisis, in your mid-Lenten experience!
1. Did you give up, or take on, anything special for Lent this year?
Plans for Lent included daily reflective blogging, some serious reading & persuading people in both churches to engage in the diocesan Praying Together" programme...
2. Have you been able to stay with your original plans, or has life gotten in the way?
3. Has God had any surprising blessings for you during this Lent?
I've learned above all the sheer depths of patience & kindness that my youngest child possesses. ..I'm still struggling to find the grace to welcome the help of others..that would be such a blessing too. Currently I feel both frustrated & embarassed. Not good.
4. What is on your inner and/or outer agenda for the remainder of Lent and Holy Week?
Somehow we have to be ready to welcome c5oo school children to take part in the Experience Easter trail - new to these parishes but something which really worked in my training parish...We have Mothering Sunday & Palm Sunday All Age services to plan & I still need 2 liturgies for Holy Week, a clutch of sermons & bucket loads of publicity...
As for me, looking inwards, I still need to come to terms with who I am when I can do so little...and the challenge of befriending this body which suddenly feels much older & less reliable than I would like.
5. Where do you most long to see resurrection, in your life and/or in the world, this Easter?
At the risk of stating the obvious, a personal resurrection that involved welcoming Easter with two open arms would be wonderful...there's scope for a few more domestic & parochial resurrections too as church on the hill sheds the first installment of scaffolding & , please God, the families that found their way to churh in te valley at Christmas remember we're still here thinking about what happened when that Baby grew up...& further afield...some signs of hope for those struggling with unemployment & the fear of losing homes along with jobs.