LENT — THE WORD AND THE SEASON
Lent comes from the Anglo-Saxon word lencten meaning spring which comes from the Anglo-Saxon “long” indicating that the days of Spring get longer. So the word Lent has no particular religious significance. Observed since the seventh century, Lent consists of the forty days preceding Easter. Beginning on Ash Wednesday, the forty-day period does not include the six Sundays. The six Sundays are Sundays in Lent, not of Lent. Ash Wednesday, a day of penitence and self-examination, is sometimes observed with an agape or love feast. Almost from the beginning, Easter was a season rather than a single day, including a memorial of the death of Christ as well as a celebration of the resurrection. Lent approaches its climax in the closing days as the passion of Christ becomes more vivid in the consciousness of the Christian during the week of Good Friday. Lent is more than remembrance; it is a preparation for a fuller participation in the…
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