The Lenten Experience

Lent is the Christian season of preparation immediately before Easter. In Western Christianity, Ash Wednesday marks the first day, or the start of the season of Lent and ends on Holy Saturday. Lent begins 40 days prior to Easter Sunday [but the six (6) Sundays are not included in the count because every Sunday is a Feast Day of The Resurrection. Therefore, they are Sundays IN Lent and not Sundays OF Lent].

Lent is a time when many Christians prepare for Easter by observing a period of intense prayer, fasting, repentance, almsgiving, moderation and spiritual discipline. The main purpose of Lent is to set aside time for reflection on Jesus Christ, not ourselves, focusing on Jesus’ suffering and His sacrifice, His life, death, burial and resurrection. The institutional principle of Lent is heightened in the annual commemoration of Holy Week—marking the Passion of Jesus on Palm Sunday and Death of Jesus Christ on Good Friday.

According to the synoptic Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke, Jesus spent forty days fasting in the desert before beginning His public ministry where He endured temptations by Satan. The Bible does not mention the custom of Lent, however, the practice of repentance and mourning in ashes is found in 2 Samuel 13:19; Esther 4:1; Job 2:8; Daniel 9:3; and Matthew 11:21.

Posted on February 21, 2015 .