Pray - Fast - Give 2-25-2018

Pillar of Lent: Almsgiving

During Lent, we are asked to focus more intently on "almsgiving," which means donating money or goods to the poor and performing other acts of charity. As one of the three pillars of Lenten practice, almsgiving is "a witness to fraternal charity" and "a work of justice pleasing to God." (Catechism of the Catholic Church, no. 2462). Giving alms, means making the needs of others our own, especially the needy of our world. They are all around us: children and the old, the sick and the suffering, families and individuals, next-door neighbors, and people faraway. Whatever we give should be something of ourselves, something that costs us. We will receive blessings from God in return. What shall we give to the needy this lent? In deciding, decide generously.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Donate the money you would have spent on whatever you’re fasting from
  • Clean your closets and donate clothing or household goods to local charities
  • Visit a nursing home – bring your little ones if you have them. The elderly would love to see children
  • Increase your giving in the offertory collection and ask that it go to Christian service activities
  • Save up all your change and give it to charity.
  • Write letters or send cards to someone you may know who has lost a loved one or is lonely
  • Volunteer once a week at a soup kitchen, shoveling snow, running errands for a homebound person, etc.
  • Give someone a compliment every day
  • Take someone to lunch every week–someone in need of companionship
  • Perform an act of charity every day
  • Be more courteous and careful when driving
  • Do you know a single parent? Reach out to them and offer to babysit, run errands, make a meal or help them in any way that is needed
  • Instead of going out to eat or entertainment, find a charity that is fundraising and support their event by attending
  • Tell someone about Jesus

Lent is an opportunity to make a greater effort to see Christ in the poor, the suffering, and the stranger, in the least among us.