by Sr. Christina Miriam Wegendt, F.S.P.
Sister Christina Miriam Wegendt, FSP, has been a Daughter of St. Paul for sixteen years. She is an acquisitions editor for Pauline Books & Media, the publishing house of her religious community, and also serves as vocation director for the Daughters of St. Paul in Boston. Sr. Christina is currently pursuing a Master of Theological Studies through St. John’s Seminary, Boston, and is looking forward to graduating in the spring of 2019.
Lent is upon us, a time in which we prepare ourselves to celebrate the paschal mystery. We live the intense days of Holy Week, especially the Triduum, mysteriously accompanying the Lord in his suffering and death (and then, of course, his resurrection!). But even as these days may feel austere and penitential, they are also cause for joy. The events of Holy Week have become transformed for us from tragedy to salvation. And when Easter arrives, this salvation becomes our great reason for rejoicing!
As you spend these days of Lent, consider the ways you have experienced the salvation of the Lord in your life. Where do you see the providence of the Lord? Where has the mercy of God touched you? What good can you trace in looking back at even painful moments in your life?
As we journey toward Easter, are there aspects of your life and heart that are crying out for the Lord’s salvation? Invite Jesus into those places in your heart, and be attentive to the ways the Lord is present to you: gently urging you to reach out to others, placing the kindness of others or the beauty of creation in your path.
As we discover the saving presence of the Lord in our lives, we may find ourselves moved to make a response to the Lord. Lent is a perfect time for this! Saint Leo the Great once explained that, “What the Christian should be doing at all times should be done now with greater care and devotion...” Search your heart to discover the ways the Lord may be calling you to extend the love you have received to others. This may be through acts of service, through kindness, gentleness, and patience, or perhaps the Lord may even stir in your heart a deeper desire to respond to the love of Christ by exploring a call to religious life or the priesthood. Pray and talk about your desires to serve the Lord with someone you trust and respect—someone who is also walking with the Lord in their own lives. And don’t be afraid to talk with those you see living out vocations of service and ministry in the Church.
Each year, my religious community, the Daughters of St. Paul, hosts a Holy Week Retreat for women ages 18-33 who are interested in discerning religious life. It’s a beautiful opportunity to spend these days in an especially prayerful way, while also getting a taste of community life and prayer and glimpse into our particular mission as sisters evangelizing with the media. Whether you’re able to participate in a retreat of this kind or you’re simply able to spend a few moments in silence during these holy days, I pray that you will discover the ways the Lord has walked with you thus far and the ways the Lord desires to lead you in the future!
For more information on the retreat, click below!