Fasting and Prayer in Lent


Gwynith Hayden

Lent is an important season for all Catholics to observe. It is a time to grow closer to the Lord and discipline ourselves.

It is the most penitential season of the Catholic church. During this time, we are preparing our hearts for the Easter season, which ends with a promise of the Second Coming. In a way, we are preparing for the Second Coming.

Lent symbolizes the forty days that Jesus spent in the desert fasting and praying. Lent is forty days long (excluding Sundays). Jesus fasted and prayed for forty days, and we are following His example.

Many people add an extra five minutes into their prayer time, and use it to focus on praying for the unborn or the homeless. In addition to prayer, we are called to fast. We don’t have to fast from food, however. We can fast from certain types of music, sugar, the snooze button…the options are endless.

The liturgical color for Lent is purple. The only other season that the color purple is used for is the season of Advent, a season of waiting for God.

During Lent, we are waiting for God in the sense that we are waiting for His Resurrection, and His Second Coming. Purple is a color that is dark and somber.

The seasons of Lent and Advent are both very serious seasons. Advent is serious because it is preparing our souls for Jesus’s nativity. Lent is serious because it is preparing our souls for Easter and the graces it gives us. In a way, it is also helping us to get to Heaven by improving ourselves. Therefore it is fitting to have a more serious color (purple) be the color for these seasons.

I hope and pray that you have a blessed successful Lent! God bless!