One Minute Reflection – 19 February – Friday after Ash Wednesday, Readings: Isaiah 58:1-9, Psalms 51:3-4, 5-6, 18-19, Matthew 9:14-15 and the Memorial of Blessed Alvarez of Cordova OP (c 1350–c 1430)
“Then they will fast” – Matthew 9:15
REFLECTION – “Although it is true, that the washing of regeneration is what chiefly makes “people new” (cf. Eph 4,24 – Col 3,10) nevertheless, because there is still for all of us, a daily renewal against the rust of mortality and in the path of progress, there is no-one, who ought not always to be better. In general, we still have to struggle, so that in the Day of Redemption, no-one may be found in sins of long standing.
What, therefore, dearly beloved, any Christian ought, at all times to do, should now be pursued more carefully and more devotedly, to fulfil the apostolic institution of forty days of fast, not only by scant food but especially by fasting from sins…To these reasonable and holy fasts, nothing is joined more carefully, than the works of almsgiving, which under the one name of mercy, includes many praiseworthy acts of devotion, so that the spirits of all the faithful can be equal in merit, even with unequal means.” – St Pope Leo the Great (400-461) Father and Doctor – 6th Sermon for Lent, 1-2; SC 49
PRAYER – Lord God, bestow a full measure of Your grace upon us, who seek to make our lenten journey fruitful. Confirm us in Your service and help us to bear witness to You in the society in which we live by our lives, our fasting and prayer, our gift of self. Listen kindly we pray, to the prayers of Bl Alvarez who so avidly followed in the footsteps of our Saviour, Lord Jesus Christ, in whose name, with the Holy Spirit, we pray, one God forever, amen.
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