Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Lent 2012

Lent is upon us.  It is my favorite liturgical season because after forty days of fasting, abstinence, and penance, I can approach Easter with a simplified life, clean soul, and joyful spirit.  I’ve been thinking about what I need to do to make this Lent solemn and transformative, and here are my Lenten plans for this year:

My personal goals:
  • Limit internet time to 1 hour per day (I’ll still be writing blog posts, just not while on the internet - it’s not blogging that takes up so much time, it’s all the other distractions online!)
  • Write one letter per day to a friend, family member, to David, or a letter to Lucia in her journal
  • Take Lucia to daily Mass at least once a week

Our family goals:
  • No sweets.  In the past (and probably still in some areas of the world) all Catholics gave up luxury foods, such as butter and sugar, during Lent in order to maintain its austerity.  If they could do it, so can we.  We tend to have dessert every night, and I imagine we’ll continue to do so, but brownies and ice cream will become fruit and yogurt.
  • Say the rosary together every night.  We say the rosary together most nights already, but during Lent, I want to make sure we (more like I) don’t make any excuses to skip it.

Solidarity with the Church:
  • I won’t be fasting on Ash Wednesday or Good Friday due to breastfeeding, but I will eat only simple meals those days.
  • Since I’m already a vegetarian, I will be eating vegan meals (like my vegan coconut corn soup) on Fridays.

Throughout Lent, I’ll also be looking for and recording ideas for celebrating Lent with children.  It will still be a few years before I can do much with Lucia, but since I didn’t grow up in a household where liturgical seasons or Church feasts were celebrated, I want to have several ideas stored up to try with our family.

What are your plans for this Lent?  What are past sacrifices or additions you’ve made during Lent that you found particularly successful?  Have any of them changed your life and your habits in the long term?  

Check out the Lent Link Ups at The Alluring World and
 Equipping Catholic Families for more posts about Lent.
Equipping Catholic Families


  1. I love the idea of letter writing! I'm sure that will make this Lent very memorable and special, especially once Lucia is old enough to read her journal from you. 

  2. That is interesting how people will give up butter. Man we go through sooo much butter/margarine it's not FUNNY! I like reading about different things people do during Lent. It makes us all unique but still catholic/christian :)

  3. I didn't know that you were already vegetarian!  I was one for 5-6 years (including when I met my husband) and my husband has been one almost all his life.  I do eat pretty meatless most of the time but I do indulge in protein for meals not involving my husband.

  4. I love your goals Mandi...very appropriate and on par with what the season is supposed to mean.
    I'm still breastfeeding but feel that my milk supply is really stable now (since we are a year in), so I fasted anyways. I also got baby G some Earth's Best fish shapes for Friday's dinner even though babies are allowed to eat me :-)
    Regarding the sweets...kudos to you! I often gave up candy or chocolate as a kid, but it's not something I have given up in recent years. I agree that we are usually an every-night dessert kind of family, but during Lent perhaps we can change that up and use the time for prayers and reflection. 
    I'm glad you posted this, I had wanted to do something like it since I did for Advent, but the move has got me so flustered! (bad excuses...)

  5. Thanks, Kaylene. Hope preparing for the move is going well, I know it can be quite stressful! Love the idea of the fish shapes for your little one - very appropriate and a great way to include her even if she's too young to really understand!


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