My Annual Lent, Lent, and More Lent Ideas Post

My Annual Lent, Lent, and More Lent Ideas Post February 19, 2023

I love Lent.  Every year, I love thinking about what to do, and how the Church tries to provide all these paths to grace, all these routes into the desert of our souls where we will find God.     


So while I agree, what should I give up for Lent is the wrong question from which to start Lent, it is still an important part of this time, to discern what we will do to discover how we can love God and everyone better.  


These suggestions are a means, and not the end.  Lent likewise is a means.  We don’t “do” Lent well by not failing, we enter into Lent and discover how much more God desires of us –that is what brings us to the list.  Traditionally, I do 40 for the 40 days.

40) Go to confession every week, and each night, do an examination of your day, asking the Holy Spirit to reveal to you, how you injure others, and how you yourself have been injured.

39) Consider reading the daily readings every day if you can’t go to daily mass.  Watch the Daily Mass as an alternative if you can’t make it.

38) Daily Rosary is a wonderful discipline.

37) Reading a Doctor of the Church –just one, these 40 days.

36) Unbound, The Chosen, and Word on Fire are all means of delving deeper.  Pick one.  Bonus if you do it together with a spouse, sibling, child, friend, or family member. Jesus sent His disciples out in pairs.  It is easier to journey with the aid of a friend.

35) Tithe –from all you receive.

34) Fast from social media.

33) Attend adoration at least once a week.

32) Keep a prayer journal, with petitions every day.

31) Get up fifteen minutes earlier than usual, so as to serve your family.

30) Abstain from fast food or diet coke or chocolate or whatever your crutch of choice is, but pair it with praying for a particular person every time you miss it.

29) Go to your church mission, and ask God every day, “Speak Lord, your servant is listening.”  Be prepared for His answer.

28) Volunteer with feeding the hungry via a local pantry program or soup kitchen.

27) Make a quiet hour in your home, after dinner, where you all gather and hear the day’s readings, and pray for each other’s needs and intentions.

26) Spend this Lent with the Psalms.  There are 150 of them, and actually, including feast days and Sundays, fifty days from Ash Wednesday to Easter –so three a day, pray them.

25) Feel like life is cluttered and you’re struggling to find space and peace?  Do the 40 bags in 40 days challenge. It’s Marie Kondo with a dose of charity and prayer.

24)  Join Laudate or Halo and be part of that online prayer community –Fr. Mike Schmitt’s Catecheism in a year, just pick up where they are and keep going.

23)  Become a lector or Extraordinary Minister or join the choir, or become some part of some ministry at your parish that brings you deeper into the community and the mass.

22) Hate to exercise? So do I.  Decide that this will be your prayer time, and go spend that hour on the treadmill, and surrender your tedium to prayer.

21) Make a list of 40 people/things/situations/frustrations that really anger you, and spend each day praying/petitioning for just one of those things, and offer them to God.

20) Make a list of 40 people you need to forgive, and offer whether in person or online or merely in prayer if that is the only way possible, forgiveness and ask God to bless them. 

19) Every day, as part of your to do list, count your blessings. 

18) Take on the Liturgy of the Hours.

17) Imitating Saint Therese of Lisieux, serve the person in your life that most vexes you, with the greatest tenderness.

16) Pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet every day.

15) Fast from all drink but water.–Because you long for the greater vintage.

14) Fast from all bread but the Eucharist, to remind you how necessary the Eucharist is.

13) Pick a saint and read deeply of their writings and their life, and see what their witness says to your life.

12) Make a pilgrimage to a shrine, basilica, or to pray before a relic as part of your penance during these 40 days.

11) Offer masses for the deceased in your family, even long after they’ve passed.

10) Make a decision to go to the stations of the cross each Friday.

9)  Sign up to visit the sick or the elderly in a home, or the imprisoned.   Do it.

8)   Join a bible study.

7)  Pick a family member, and whatever you fast from, do it for them.

6)   Participate in the 40 Days for Life.

5)   Pray at a graveyard for the deceased, or at adoration for the deceased mentioned in your bulletin each week.

4)Fast from complaining –as a form of spiritual poverty, allowing others to take the lead, take charge, and be a source of support to them.

3)   Call your family that is far from you just to say hi, and to pray a Hail Mary or two with them, so that each day of Lent becomes part of a Rosary done over the whole of Lent.

2)  Total Consecration to Jesus through Mary starts February 20th so you have to do two days to get to the Feast of Annunciation, March 25th –having done this before, it’s difficult, and I promise, it counts. It does the trick.  Spiritual weight training for sure.  
1) Write letters of gratitude –to different people each day of Lent. 



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