4 Tips to Help You Prepare for Lent

Lent begins on February 26, which gives you just over two weeks to figure out how you’re going to make this season a fruitful one. That’s right, this season of preparation and penance requires a bit of preparation itself. How do you want to grow during Lent so that you can celebrate our Risen Lord in a new and deeper way?

Listening to Relevant Radio® is a great way to learn, grow, and share your faith before, during, and after Lent. But we have one special tip to help you be ready for Lent even before Ash Wednesday.

Enlist a Companion on the Journey
When it comes to the journey of Lent, it’s helpful to have a companion with you along the way who will help you grow each and every day. Last year, tens of thousands of people journeyed together through Father Rocky’s Lenten Lessons on the Mass. Delivered to your inbox daily, these Lenten Lessons are a popular way to learn a little bit each day and deepen your knowledge of the greatest sacrament during this season of repentance and preparation.

And this year, Lenten Lessons on the Mass are new and improved! Fr. Rocky has recorded each lesson into 60-second audio clips so you can listen anytime, anywhere. Learn more about the Mass while you drive to work, at dinner time with your family, or while you brush your teeth!

Sign up for Lenten Lessons today so that you are prepared to learn, grow, and be inspired with the first lesson on Ash Wednesday.

Looking for more tips on how to prepare for Lent? Emily Jaminet, a regular Morning Air® contributor, recently offered some more strategies to ensure your Lent this year is a fruitful one. Emily’s advice was:

Make a Plan
The first thing is we assess where we’re at. So for some families, it might be saying, we’ve got to get to Mass every single Sunday. You know, let’s begin this Lent with the family going to Reconciliation. Let’s find a Reconciliation service. Let’s go and really make this a priority of which Mass we’re going to attend. So that might be their family starting point. Or a family meal, or a family Rosary. What can we bring back into the culture or reintroduced into our family life?

I remember one Lent we just needed to memorize our Morning Offering. That was very challenging for our family. So that was part of our Lenten routine. Where is the prayer? Where am I going to put the prayer? How are we going to say this prayer? So this is the time to kind of think through the logistics. For some of us it might be that we’re overwhelmed with meal planning and serving a meatless Friday meal. Or fasting. What does that look like? This is a great time to kind of set some goals and realistic expectations.

Focus on Growth, Not Perfection
We can look to other people’s social media posts, and look at what their family is doing and think, ‘Oh, they’re the perfect Catholic family.’ And I think what we want to do is clear the air and say there’s no such thing as that except for our Holy Family. But we can strive to grow from where we’re at. So setting realistic goals. Maybe it’s waking up with a smile on your face, if you know you’re not a morning person, and that’s a really grumpy time. You know, what can you do to increase the joy in your home? Increase, really, the virtues of growth? There’s no such thing as Pinterest Perfect. But for some of us, we need to remember to not be discouraged. And social media just might be what needs to go during this time of growth, if that’s a real trouble for you and for your children.

Remember It’s Not About Achievement, But Growing Closer to the Lord
I was thinking back to the seven Lents that I was pregnant, and as a pregnant woman that was very challenging. You know, the exhaustion and how I was feeling, and it made me so much more sympathetic to others with health conditions, pregnancy, or whatever that trial is. So first, being compassionate to those around us, encouraging them, supporting them. Telling people that you’re praying for them and and being gentle. Because I think that we must remember that our Lord loves us so much, and He is a gentle, good God. He is our Father.

So we go into Lent with that type of disposition. If it’s just cleaning your bedroom out like I have done, or putting a prayer chair in there so that I have a place to pray, or wiping off that table so that my Bible is right there with a candle and my rosary. Or not hitting the snooze button. That’s a great Lenten sacrifice. And you know, getting up with Daybreak™ and starting your day with morning prayer, starting your day with the Divine Office. These are such beautiful ways to grow as a person. And the great thing about spiritual growth is you really don’t want to go back to your old version. You want to keep growing because you are closer to the heart of our Lord.

Listen to the full conversation with Emily Jaminet below:

Morning Air can be heard weekdays from 6:00 – 9:00 a.m. Eastern/3:00 – 6:00 a.m. Pacific on Relevant Radio® and the Relevant Radio App.

Stephanie Foley serves as a Digital Media Producer at Relevant Radio®. She is a graduate of Franciscan University of Steubenville, where she studied journalism, and she has worked in Catholic radio for 12 years. Stephanie is a wife, a mother of three boys, and in her free time she enjoys reading, running, and really good coffee. You can find more of Stephanie’s writing at relevantradio.com and on the free Relevant Radio mobile app.