Living the Triduum and the Easter Season

The high point of the liturgical year starts with the Triduum and continues throughout the 50 days of the Easter season. We can use this time to reflect on how we live the Paschal Mystery. Here are some ideas to incorporate the Triduum and the Easter season into everyday life. Make the Triduum count. Be present in the liturgical celebrations of the Triduum, from sundown on Holy Thursday until sundown on Easter Sunday. Holy Week […]

Living the Liturgical Year at Home: Lent

The disciplines of Lent offer an annual chance for spiritual housekeeping, a time to reflect on our faith in every aspect of our lives. Lent is also a 40-day journey that, like any journey, benefits from having a well-planned itinerary. Know your destination. Lent’s destination is Easter, when we renew our baptismal promises to be the light of Christ in the world. The penitential practices of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving cleanse us and prepare us […]

Living the Liturgical Seasons at Home: Winter Ordinary Time

As we put away the Christmas decorations and enter Ordinary Time, things might seem just a bit drab. This isn’t just a bland waiting-period for Lent. These weeks are an opportunity to focus on the public ministry of Jesus through the readings of the new cycle’s Gospels. Ordinary Time is about spiritual growth. Just as in Ordinary Time during summer and fall, engaging in family prayer, having a home altar or a prayer centerpiece on […]

Celebrating the Christmas Season at Home

The Christmas season—which begins on December 25 with Christmas and ends with the Baptism of the Lord—offers many opportunities to celebrate Jesus’ Incarnation. Here are a few ways to celebrate Christmas that will bring you closer to Jesus and to the ones you love. Prepare During Advent. The time spent preparing for the coming of Christ during December will affect our experience of Christmas when it finally arrives. Attend Mass and a meal with family […]

Six Ways to Celebrate Advent at Home

Advent offers unique and beautiful opportunities to make family memories in the home. The traditions of this season allow Catholics to practice our faith more deeply and with greater attention and intent. Here are some simple ideas to celebrate a faith-filled Advent. 1. Savor the darkness. During Advent, the days are short and the nights are long. Just as we long for the warm and sunny days of summer, we long for the light of […]

Living the Liturgical Seasons at Home: Summer/Fall Ordinary Time

The liturgical year is 365 days a year, and the season of Ordinary Time is a course of instruction in the Christian life. Ordinary Time after Pentecost and before Advent is a period when we celebrate no particular aspect of Christ, but honor him in the fullness of his mystery. (Universal Norms of the Liturgical Year, 43) We spend time with Jesus and let him be with us and in us as we grow closer […]

Understanding Ordinary Time

Today we once again find ourselves in Ordinary Time—at least for a month or so until Lent begins on February 10. Ordinary Time gets a bad rap, as though it is time that is easily ignored because it is so “ordinary.” First of all, we call it “ordinary” because it is “counted time,” as in “ordinal” numbers. We count time to remind ourselves that all time belongs to God. Thus, while today is January 11 […]

Welcome Advent!

This Sunday, we celebrate the beginning of a new liturgical year with the First Sunday of Advent. This is one of my favorite seasons of the year because it calls us to renew our hope. Christian hope is not some random wishful thinking. It is the anticipation of something that we KNOW is coming and that something (someone) is Jesus Christ who comes to us in history, in mystery, and in majesty. Here are links to […]

The Liturgical Calendar, the Paschal Mystery, and the Grand Canyon

If you’ve ever visited the Grand Canyon, you know that its immenseness is overwhelming: 277 river miles long, up to 18 mles wide, and a mile deep! All around the rim of the Canyon are numerous breathtaking look-out points. What do visitors to the Grand Canyon do? They walk along the trails and pause at various look-out points to take in the view from specific vantage points. Along the way, they are looking at the same […]