Prayer of the Day

Feast of St. Perpetua & St. Felicity

March 7th, 2014
""This, rather, is the fasting that I wish - to share your bread with the hungry, and shelter the homeless poor."" Isaiah 58 : 7

In Old Testament times fasting was a sign of penance for sin.  We remember the story of Jonah going to Nineveh and the people putting on sackcloth and ashes as a sign of repentance.   In the New Testament the motivation for fasting took a different direction because Jesus fasted and prayed for 40 days as a preparation for his public ministry.  His fasting helped him to listen with the ears of his heart to what God, his Father, wanted him to do.  The fasting weakened his body but strengthened his will not to give in to the temptations put before him by Satan.  Our Lenten fast is meant to help us to walk resolutely with Jesus listening to every word he has to say.    As we walk along the journey with Jesus we experience the compassion and mercy he shows to all the marginalised and sinful people he meets.  There is no condemnation, just mercy.  He looks at us and asks us to do likewise.  We feel ashamed of our judgements and condemnations.  We see him feed the hungry and he asks us to do the same.  We feel ashamed of our food laden supermarkets on the one hand and the pictures on our T.V. screens of children and adults dying of starvation.  We resolve to eat and live more frugally so that others may live. 

Prayer Loving Lord, as you led your people through the desert, lead me now through the desert of my failures. Light my way so that I may know, love and serve you more faithfully during this Lenten season and for the rest of my life. Amen