2017 Busy Catholic’s Online Lenten Retreat
Living Lent With Love
Thursday, March 23
Thursday, March 23
The word came to Jeremiah from the LORD: This rather is what I commanded them: Listen to my voice; then I will be your God and you shall be my people. Walk exactly in the way I command you, so that you may prosper. But they did not listen to me, nor did they pay attention. They walked in the stubbornness of their evil hearts and turned their backs, not their faces, to me. From the day that your ancestors left the land of Egypt even to this day, I kept on sending all my servants the prophets to you. Yet they have not listened to me nor have they paid attention; they have stiffened their necks and done worse than their ancestors. When you speak all these words to them, they will not listen to you either. When you call to them, they will not answer you. Say to them: This is the nation which does not listen to the voice of the LORD, its God, or take correction. Faithfulness has disappeared; the word itself is banished from their speech.
Pope Francis’s Reflection
We need to practice the art of listening, which is more than simply hearing. Listening, in communication, is an openness of heart which makes possible that closeness without which genuine spiritual encounter cannot occur. Listening helps us to find the right gesture and word which shows that we are more than simply bystanders. Only through such respectful and compassionate listening can we enter on the paths of true growth and awaken a yearning for the Christian ideal….
(Apostolic Exhortation/The Joy of the Gospel #171)
Let us pray.
Loving God, at times I can feel a bit sorry for you. After all, you’re continually pouring out your love for me, showering me with your presence and your grace. And what happens? So many times I don’t pay attention. I go on my way and miss the announcement that you are here, now. It seems I hear, but I don’t really listen, don’t take your word into my heart, wrestle with it and invite it to transform my life. Open my heart so that nothing stands in the way of you. Amen.
Material in this year’s online retreat is excerpted with permission from Living Lent with Love.
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Published by special arrangement with Creative Communications for the Parish