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10:00 AM | Sunday
9:00 AM | Weekdays
St. Casimir's Parish
Polish National Catholic Church
268 Lakeview Avenue - Lowell, Massachusetts 01850 USA
Kitchen volunteers: Bob Hunt, Pat Whiting, Paula Jones, Beverly Runowicz, Linda Hedrick
Lent is an annual opportunity to grow in our faith. It means it’s much more than giving up unhealthy foods or treats. It is about abstaining from whatever is unhealthy in our lives – gossip, laziness, lack of social conscience – and, most importantly, taking concrete steps to do something more.
1. Make a commitment to reading the Sunday readings before you go to Mass. Familiarizing yourself with the readings ahead of time can allow you to experience them in a deeper way on Sunday.
2. Think about what you usually spend your money on. Pick one type of expenditure that you’ll “fast” from during Lent, and give the money you would usually spend to a great local charity.
3. When you first sit down in front of your computer at work, or at the very end of your work day, try a 5-minute prayer.
4. If you don’t have a cross, buy a simple one and put it in your bedroom.
5. Read the entire Gospel of Mark during Lent. As the shortest Gospel, it is the most concise story of Jesus’ life, and the cross, a central Lenten symbol, plays an even more prominent role than in the other Gospels.
6. Attend the Stations of the Cross at your church. This experience could help you gain a deeper understanding of your faith.
7. Think about a habit that has kept you from being who God is calling you to be, consciously give up that habit for Lent.
8. Talk about our Church community to someone. You could be surprised how many people are interested in finding a good worship community.
9. Make a commitment to “fast” from cruel comments about others.
10. As a part of your Lenten almsgiving, make a point to learn as much as possible about a particular social issue (immigration, human trafficking, AIDS victims, child poverty, or homelessness.) Give money to an organization related to your chosen issue that supports the dignity of the human person.
11. Pray for somebody during your day. Pick out a person who appears to be in need and pray for that person.
12. Get involved in the activities of our parish. We are looking for your help!
13. As you are waiting to fall asleep at night, pray the Jesus Prayer silently: “Lord Jesus, Son of the Living God, have mercy on me.”
14. Read the Works of Mercy as Jesus describes them in Matthew 25. “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink…in prison and you visited me.” There are plenty of opportunities in your own community to put this teaching into practice during Lent.
It is important for us to remember that our Lenten practices are not for a show to others, but flow from the need of our hearts. Let us remember that God sees our efforts and will never be indifferent to those who genuinely desire to do His will. With this disposition, let us enter the penitential sprit of Lent.
Karen Sobiechowski leads the singing of Lenten Hymns
Our annual Lenten retreat was held at St. Casimir’s parish in Lowell on Saturday February 25.
The event began at 9:00 AM with a Holy mass of the Lenten Day, which was celebrated by the Very Rev. Rob Nemkovich. Rev. Dr. Henryk Wos gave the Homily.
After Mass everyone gathered at the church hall. Fr. Sr. Rob gave a thoughtful presentation on Lenten Reflections. The presentation encouraged parishioners to contemplate the lesson in the Gospel during each Sunday of Lent. We should think about what it is the church is teaching us, face the challenges we need to overcome, and decide if we are willing to walk the path of sacrifice through time in prayer, time in abstinence and time in works for others.
Our retreat members then read the Passion of Our Lord according to Luke. It was a moving reminder of what Jesus endured for our salvation. He offered Himself as the perfect sacrifice for sin on the altar of the cross and washed away our sins with His blood. Meditating on His passion will strengthen us against temptation and keep us on the path of salvation.
Karen Sobiechowski lead us in song with a selection of Lenten Hymns: “The Old Rugged Cross”, “The Jesus Prayer”,” O Sacred Heart”, and “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross”. It was a beautiful rendition of these hymns and it was wonderful to hear everyone’s voice raised in song.
Bishop Paul Sobiechowski led a mid-day prayer and we stopped for lunch. Our volunteers offered soups and sandwiches, and desserts, all homemade and delicious.
Following Father Andrew’s celebration of Sorrowful Lamentations, Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament and the Bishop’s blessing, our Lenten retreat ended. It was a meaningful event made even more special by the efforts of all involved in putting together this retreat.
Group Photo following Holy Mass of Lenten Day
Father Tenus celebrates Sorrowful Lamentations with Benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament