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Preparation

- Fr. Lawrence  Jagdfeld, O.F.M., Administrator

I spent a good part of yesterday at the hospital.  My doctor had ordered a CAT scan of my abdomen.  I arrived at the hospital in plenty of time despite that the appointment was scheduled to coincide with the Chicago rush hour.  After filling out all the paper work, I was led into a lounge where I was told that I had to drink a banana-flavored preparation, one immediately and the other a half hour later.  After an hour of waiting for the solution to make its way through my system, I was led into a room with the scanner.  The entire scan took no more than five minutes, if that.  Then I was told that I could dress and go home.  I was stunned.  I had spent over an hour waiting for a test that took less than five minutes to complete. 

As I dwelled with these thoughts, I recognized that Lent is very much like the time I spent waiting.  I had to simply sit and wait while the solution within my system made its way to the necessary site.  Lent is a time of quiet waiting while we allow the grace of God to work on us in order to prepare ourselves for the glorious feast that is to come.  Once we celebrate the Easter mysteries, most people will find it hard to extend the celebration for the entire fifty days of Easter.  The lilies will fade, the baskets will disappear, and we will move on to other things.  The preparation time, however, is quite intense.

We fast, we pray, and we practice charity.  This is the formula for our preparation.  It isn’t banana-flavored, but it works within us to create a proper disposition so that we can renew our Baptismal promises with all the fervor we can muster.  May you all “prepare the way of the Lord” as we make our ways through the desert of Lent. 

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