Lent – challenge to think differently

by | Mar 6, 2011 | Vincentian Family | 5 comments

“Let us focus especially on our relationship with the poor” writes Fr. Gregory Gay in his Lenten letter. (Lent-2011-ENG)

If “metanonia” literally means “change your way of thinking”, then Lent is the perfect time for us to look at systemic change in our own lives and especially as followers of Vincent, Louise,   Frederic, Elizabeth, etc. John Paul ll challenged Vincentians to  understand underlying causes and work toward long-term solutions.

This Lent… How do we need to change our way of thinking about

  • our own lives – from “Just Us” to Justice?
  • about how we serve –  from just service to also fostering empowerment?

Last year the Lenten Letter of Fr. Gregory Gay, CM provided some food for thought with its emphasis on the themes: Non-violence towards the planet, Building new life out of fragility, Promoting new life through non-violent means,  and Non-violence towards the other. See the VinFormation site for a series of visual thought starters on these themes

The Vincentian Encyclopedia presents an overview of Lenten resources  entitled “Vincentian and Lent.”

The Sisters of Charity of New York present a very nice summary of Vincentian Spirituality which relates nicely to the Lenten call to “change our way of thinking”.

Sr. Anita M. Constance, a Sister of Charity of Saint Elizabeth, Convent Station, NJ, has written Living the Days of Lent 2011..Available from Paulist Press for $4.95, this resource offers a one-page Scriptural meditation for each day of Lent, with illustrations and detachable

Lenten Reflection Program for Vincentians (PDF) with Dr. Susan Muto (Pittsburgh)

Catholic Relief Services excerpts from Benedict XV!’s Lenten Letter

Lenten Letters of Superiors General


Miscellaneous other resources

  • Almsgiving The Jubilee in St. Vincent’s Thought
  • A Spiritualilty of Justice; A spirituality of the Poor Fr. Dan Borlick, CM


  • Bread on the Waters One of the most heavily visited sites on the Internet for material on lent and the Passion. During the Lent the entry page to this site features an incredibly rich covariety of perspectives.



  1. jbf

    The Australian CM site posts the following…

    Another way of observing Lent – A Carbon Fast Calendar

    SYDNEY: The Conference of Leaders of Religious Institutes (CLRI) in NSW has forwarded, and has asked to be circulated, a copy of a Carbon Fast Calendar. You can download the Calendar from this site through the link Carbon Fast Calendar, or from the “What’s New” section of the CLRI Site.

  2. jbf

    Hopefully we have weeded out what is sometimes referred to as “Link Rot” or inactive links. If any remain please notify us.

  3. jbf

    40 days with the least”  (pdf) as a way of engaging with Fr. Greg Gay’s Lenten Letter.

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