Dear Members of the Lay Order,
How is your Lent going? Hopefully, you began with some good and practical (for you) resolutions that were not too rigorous. Hopefully, you are persevering now that we’re in the First Week. If you are looking for something to improve your spiritual life that is also in the Norbertine spirit, then I suggest a focus on the liturgy of Lent.
The readings and Mass texts for Lent change every day so each day you have material for spiritual reading and meditation. Each Sunday of Lent this year there is a different theme developed in the 3 readings. You could spend 20 minutes or more reading and reflecting on these readings and gain the indulgence for reading the Bible.
Related to the Mass is the Liturgy of the Hours. As a Lay Order member you should be praying Morning Prayer and Evening Prayer daily. If that custom has fallen into disuse you should revive it. Again, each day of Lent there is at least an antiphon that relates to the Gospel of the day. For a more in-depth experience you could add the Office of Readings as a Lenten practice. The Book of Exodus is the main source of the readings during the first four weeks, then in the fifth week and Holy Week we read from the Letter to the Hebrews. These readings are a great preparation for Easter.
Let’s remember to keep the goal in mind. We are praying, fasting, and doing works of charity as a preparation for renewing our Baptismal promises. We do all in union with our suffering Lord because our Baptism unites us to Him in His saving mysteries.
Finally, let us continue to “walk with Mary our Mother” who will strengthen us for this Lenten journey.
Kind regards in the Lord,
Fr. Hildebrand Garceau, O. Praem.
“Before all else, dear brothers, love God and then your neighbor, because these are the chief commandments given to us”
(Rule of St. Augustine)
Monthly Meeting – Sunday, March 19
12:30 p.m. – Potluck lunch
1:30 p.m. – Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament
2:00 p.m. – Affiliate Meeting – “Overview of Norbertine History”
3:00 p.m. – Novitiate Meeting – “Life of St. Norbert, early saints and foundations”
For information or if you have questions, please email LayOrder@StMichaelsAbbey.com