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Barren Fig-Tree: Spiritual Reading for Lent

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  • ISBN-13: 9781483907260
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
  • Release Date: Mar 19, 2013
  • Pages: 92 pages
  • Dimensions: 0.21 x 9.0 x 6.0 inches


Although there is not a time, not a day, indeed, I might say, not an hour, in human existence, when man should not be working for his eternal salvation, yet the holy season of Lent, in particular, is a time during which the Christian must think quite especially of his sanctification, and the salvation of his immortal soul. "Behold," I would exclaim with St. Paul, respecting this holy season, "now is the acceptable time now is the day of salvation." (II. Cor. vi. 2.) These are the days when, looking upon the Son of God who fasted for our sins. looking upon Christ crucified, who gave up His blood and life for t.he sake of our offences, we should fast, perform works of penance, die to our sins, and thereby make sure of our eternal salvation. To this great and holy end our holy Church, who has the salvation of souls always in view, has ordered us to fast according to the will of Jesus Christ. She has chosen the period preceding the holy festival of Easter as a time for fasting, because, during this time, our Divine Redeemer suffered for our sins, and that we may do penance with Him for our own transgressions. During this time does the Church put on the color of mourning, to remind us to wail over our sins and errors, and sincerely to repent for them. During this time she orders doleful anthem to be sung during the Divine service, instead of hymns of joy, to make us feel the grievousness and misery of our sins. Towards the end of Lent she demands of us to blot out our sins, by tears of contrition, and a perfect confession amI penance, as Christ blotted them out on the cross by His blood. And finally, our holy Church demands of us, that when we have, in union with our Lord. done sufficient penance for our sins, and have risen with Him to a new life, we should intone a joyous Allelujah on the day of the Resurrection, after haying gained victory over sin, as He did over death, and placed the salvation of our souls in safety, during the holy season of Lent. Behold the object of fasting. And that the faithful should feel themselves more and more impelled to do their utmost to attain this object. It is the sacred duty of the priest continually to urge them thereto, and to keep before their souls the necessity of penance. And thr return to God; ill it word, the necessity of saying their souls. Well, now! I will fulfil this sacred duty, by showing you that you are created for the purpose of making your souls happy everlastingly, by truly serving God, and not only during this holy season, but during the whole of your lives living, virtuously performing good works, and by completely dying to your sins. During this important season of the ecclesiastical year I shall endeavor to lay all these truths to your hearts: by explaining to yon (in the order of its important contents) the parable of the barren fig-tree, as Jesus Christ relates it to us in the Gospel of St. Luke. (xiii. 6-9.)

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