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5 Hardships of COVID-19 that can help sanctify Lent


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Cerith Gardiner - published on 02/17/21

This Lent, see how the pandemic has brought you closer to God.

As you begin the Lenten season you may be wondering how you can make it meaningful while taking into account the hardships that the past year has already brought to so many. The good news is that many of the difficulties we’ve all been suffering can bring us closer to God, if we let them.

So consider the hardships you may already be experiencing as greats way to sanctify Lent this year.

Family absence

The hardest part of this pandemic has been not being able to see and hold much-loved family members. While their physical absence has been hard, the result is that many have a newfound gratitude not only for their families, but also for the joys of a simple hug. It’s also provided us with the opportunity to lean more on our Heavenly Father, to ask for both His help and His love through the pandemic.

Self isolation

As you’ve spent more time in your home, not only has your appreciation grown for the safety it provides, but perhaps you’ve also had more time to focus on prayer. With Mass online for most, many Catholics have spent time and effort creating a lovely prayer corner — a place to retreat to during Lent to focus on your relationship with God.

Serving others

During the pandemic there have been countless tales of people looking out for others. Teenagers have been busy looking out for vulnerable seniors in their community, and the elderly have been an inspiration to all in rising to the challenge of living in a pandemic. These acts of kindness are fundamental throughout the year, but during Lent they can strengthen our commitment to serve God..

Masking up

Many people have been encouraged or required to wear a mask to help stop the spread of the virus. There’s no doubt masks are uncomfortable and not the most flattering accessory. However, this small personal sacrifice helps reduce risk and shows a commitment to wanting to protect yourself and others. Offer up the unpleasantness of mask wearing to God this Lent!

Going without

Whether it’s going without a vacation, or not being able to eat at your favorite restaurant, these disappointments can be embraced during Lent as a sign of personal sacrifice. In a way you’ve been giving up pleasures throughout the year, so try to see this as an extended penance and it won’t feel as frustrating!

Croagh Patrick

Read more:
8 Old Irish Lenten traditions

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