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Author offers lessons for Lent

By Sister Jean Peerenboom, OSF

Not By Bread Alone: Daily Reflections for Lent 2009, by Katherine Howard, OSB. (Liturgical Press, Collegeville, MN; $2)

Learning the language of love – that’s a good goal for this Lenten season as the world faces so many problems and despair.

Sister Katherine Howard walks readers through those lessons in her 2009 Lenten reflections. “To fast, pray and give alms are the three practices Christ invites us to during Lent,” she says. “They help us get in sync with the dance of love, learn the language of love, open ourselves more fully to the Easter spring of joyful love that is always bubbling up within and around us even when it is overgrown by weeds.”

By taking just a few minutes a day for meditation, we clear out the weeds and change our lives. “We learn to let God be God, to want only the triumph of divine love in our selves, our Christian communities and the world,” she says.

The theme for Ash Wednesday is “Starting Over.” It’s a time to turn our attention “to the deeper life that is within us.” We do this by letting go of things that separate us from God.

Each of the days between Ash Wednesday and Easter Sunday focuses on a part of the daily reading. Howard includes an insightful reflection, a meditation and a prayer to challenge and inspire us to experience the presence of God in our every day, busy lives. It is a call to conversion, to change our attitudes and behaviors so we can share the joy and hope of the Resurrection every day of our lives.

There are many good reflection books available for Lent. I like this one because Howard explores Scripture and then ties it to something that is real in my life today. She is realistic and practical. As I read through the pages, I felt that I can change in a small way each day.

If you are looking ahead, the next Daily Reflections offering will be Waiting in Joyful Hope: Daily Reflections for Advent and Christmas 2009-2010 by Bishop Robert F. Morneau.

Sister Jean Peerenboom is the former religion/books editor from the Green Bay Press Gazette. Sister Jean is a member of the Sisters of St. Francis of the Holy Cross. She writes a monthly book review for the Holy Cross Family Blogspot.

To read all of Sister Jean Peerenboom's book reviews, click here.

1 comment:

Cathy Putman said...

Dear St Jean, I came upon this when looking at sample blogs recommended by Micah O'Malley. So you're still in the book talk business in another venue. Congratulations on your successful journey through nun school and I enjoyed reading this review and will check on others since I am the de facto church librarian at Union. With a couple of others, I am part of book group that will meet during the noon hour starting in APril to talk about Charles Taylor's The Secular Age. It's long, he's a philosopher, but responds to a key issue for churches and spiritual persons today. Let me know if you are interested in more details. Cathy Putman, cputman@new.rr.com