Thursday, February 19, 2009


So we are about to crash head first into lent but there are still a few days to plan what you are going to practice to enable you to grow spiritually during this season. We are called to prayer, fasting, and abstinence during these 40 days and many people will challenge themselves in these areas through a pledge to God most likely in giving up something or doing something extra. Some will fast from television reruns or pizza or going to the track. Others will pledge to do something like treat their family better, get their homework done without being told, or finally sign up for the Peace Corps. About three days into this there will be the inevitable questions on every Catholic blog and of the priest in each parish after Mass as to whether we can break our vows on Sunday or some solemnity. There will be all kinds of opinions and Mr. Akins will unbury his excellent post concerning the more technical aspects of the question.

IMHO – it all comes down to this: What was your vow? Was it “I will not torment by baby brother,” or was it, “I promise not to torment my baby brother except on Sunday?”


Every year there is a group that likes to get together and do something creative with the Stations of Cross. Usually it takes the shape of “Living Stations” or some such thing. Now, know here and now that I am not opposed to such things and from time to time actually enjoy them. Prayer is prayer and all prayer is good. It is just interesting to note however that the indulgence, which is attached to the Stations, may only be obtained if a person participating actually symbolically makes the journey with Jesus by going from station to station. Further, the indulgence is not attached to the wonderful pictures that grace our church walls but to the fourteen wooden crosses by which a picture may be hung.


Anonymous said...

I'm confused about the Way of the Cross section of this post. Do the "14 wooden crosses by which a picture may be hung" refer only to your specific church building or to some practice that I've never before heard about. I've always done the way of the cross by stopping at each of the stations positioned in our church building. Is that correct?

Fr. V said...

Wayne -

THat is for ALL Stations of the Cross. If you notice - if it is done correctly - that over or next to or as part of the pictured stations there is usually a small wooden cross. We identify better perhaps witht the picture, but the indulgence is attached to the crosses. Does that make better sense?

Anonymous said...

You mean we can actually promise to give up 'tormenting our siblings/relatives everyday during Lent except on Sundays'??? teee heee ... Can't wait 'til my family hears this!

(okay, yes, I know ... the answer is a steadfast NO! - but wow, the thought was a lot of fun!)

Anonymous said...

I'll try praying the Stations again this year.. I tried a few years ago for the first time, and got as far as the Third Station and lost it. I don't recall little wooden crosses near the Stations, but there is a cross above each..

MJ said...

OK ,I don't have siblings. Does it work with husbands and/or your children?