|Dogwood In Yosemite Park|
If you are stopping by here during Lent, you probably won't find anything new. I put some links in the sidebar to things I've written before and that bear re-reading, so I humbly declare. I will be reading other blogs and thinking about your comments, so I hope that you will feel free to send along a note, even on the oldest posts, which are often about timeless subjects after all. Or an e-mail -- my address is on my profile page.
About those security words that Blogger wants us commenters to decipher: I squint and guess at them, and half the time get them wrong once or twice while I am trying to comment on someone's blog -- so just in case any of my readers feels the same deterring effect here, I have removed that part of the commenting process on my blog. I always put comments through the filter of my visual approval anyway, so unless something terrible happens I'll continue to use only that means to keep ugly things off these pages.
In Latin and other Romance languages the word for lent has something to do with 40 days, but Wikipedia tells us that "in the late Middle Ages, as sermons began to be given in the vernacular instead of Latin, the English word lent was adopted. This word initially simply meant spring (as in the German language Lenz and Dutch lente) and derives from the Germanic root for long because in the spring the days visibly lengthen."
Of course, on the southern half of our globe, it's Autumn during Lent, but even there, the repentance that is the central theme of Lent can be, as Metropolitan Kallistos says, "an opening flower." Springtime in our souls!
The Lenten Prayer of St. Ephrem the Syrian
O Lord and Master of my life!
Take from me the spirit of sloth, faint-heartedness,
lust of power, and idle talk.
But give rather the spirit of chastity, humility,
patience, and love to Thy servant.
Yea, O Lord and King!
Grant me to see my own errors
and not to judge my brother;
For Thou art blessed unto ages of ages. Amen.