Cardinal Dolan: Have We Lost Lent?

From Cardinal Dolan's blog...

'I admire how our Jewish neighbors take their “high holy days” in the fall so seriously, especially the days of penance, fasting, and contrition . . .

Our Islamic neighbors fast all day and deepen their prayers for a month at Ramadan . . .

And here, my Catholic people write me for a “dispensation” on one of the six measly Fridays we’re asked to abstain from meat (big sacrifice these days!), if they even bother with the dispensation at all.

Am I being too gloomy here? You know me well enough to realize I’m hardly puritanical or a crab. All I’m asking is: have we lost Lent? Is it all now nostalgia, a museum piece, in the attics of our souls, as we tell our kids and grandkids how Lent “used-to-be”?

Lent didn’t just used to be . . . it’s needed now more than ever!

Let me ask you, is there anything different at all in your life, in the rhythm of your family and home, in your parish, this Lent?

Is it too late to get it back?'

To which the answer, of course, is no. As Bishop Malcolm McMahon has made clear, nothing in the Catholic tradition of Faith is irretrievable. How wonderful it will be to see a Bishop in Liverpool be generous in the provision of the Mass of Ages. It would seem that the new Auxillary appointment at Birmingham agrees, thanks be to God!

Promoting popular devotions, the Traditional Latin Mass, the promotion of regular Confession, Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, encouraging the Faithful to take Lent seriously and to fast, pray and give alms - these are all ways in which Bishops, Priests, Cardinals and Popes, indeed, can embolden the people of God in our mission to save souls and to become Saints. Who knows? Perhaps our Lenten penances and prayers for Holy Mother Church are assisting in what, God willing, could bring renewal and growth to the Church in England and Wales. However these exciting appointments have come about, PrayTell are not, it appears, too happy.

Comments

Dymphna said…
I work for a Jewish company. My bosses do take the holy days seriously but they are completely secular all the rest of the year. If Cardinal Dolan wants to use an example to shame Catholics he ought to use another one especially since the Jewish population in NYC is large and people can see with their own eyes that except for the Hasids the people Caridnal Dolan is praising are just like them.
Supertradmum said…
It is up to parents in homes to teach children from an early age the art of fasting and abstinence. The Byzatines manage to keep stricter fasts than those in the Latin Rite.

The sin of gluttony is one which is never written about, hardly, although I wrote about it on my blog in Advent. Gluttony not only means eating too much but being picky about food. Being picky is a sin, unless one has death threatening allergies.

I did not wait until my son was a teen to impose fasting-kids who are moderately healthy benefit from fasting.

And abstinence from meat is also a good.

But, Lent is more than these traditions. Lent is a mindset of accepting mortification for one's own sins and those of others.

The problem is that people do not believe in hell and, therefore, do not believe in redemptive suffering and mortification.
Aged parent said…
Remarks as those by Cardinal Dolan make me want to laugh...or cry. He and his brother Bishops who have done next to nothing in their careers to foster Catholic devotions, liturgical practices or moral teachings having the colossal gall to write about such things is incredible.

If His Eminence wishes for us to take him seriously, he might close down the homosexual "masses" going on in his diocese, and he might stop giving sacrilegious Communions to the likes of Joe Biden, et al.

Frankly, Cardinal Dolan is an utter disgrace.
viterbo said…
Lent seems as meaningful in the average New Rite parish as Latin, or the Real Presence. Mind you, when popes teach that fasting and caressing someone are equivalent penances, why bother?

One has to ignore the new rite indifference and know that 1900 years of Catholics didn't get it wrong.
Elizabeth said…
@Aged Parent: You've pretty much summed it up, as far as I'm concerned also. Utter disgrace.
Lynda said…
And I would say to Cardinal Dolan: Most baptised have lost the Faith and thus do not observe Lent, mainly because their priests and bishops first "lost" the Faith and fail to teach, govern and sanctify in accordance with the deposit of Faith. The superficiality, the feigned innocence is an affront to God and the people to whom such bishops are obliged to be spiritual fathers. Blessed Michael protect us in battle ...