LENT is a solemnity religious observance in the Catholic liturgical calendar that begins on Ash Wednesday and ends approximately six weeks later, before Easter Sunday. The purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer for Easter through prayer, doing penance, repentance of sins, almsgiving, and denial of ego.
The last week of Lent is Holy Week, starting with Palm Sunday. Following the New Testament story, Jesus' crucifixion is commemorated on Good Friday, and at the beginning of the next week the joyful celebration of Easter Sunday recalls the accounts of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. The Stations of the Cross, a devotional commemoration of Christ's carrying the Cross and of his execution, are often observed.
Lent is traditionally described as lasting for 40 days, in commemoration of the 40 days Jesus spent fasting in the desert, according to the Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke, before beginning his public ministry, during which he endured temptation by Satan. Lent ends on the evening of Holy Thursday with Easter Vigil at sundown on Holy Saturday, on the morning of Easter Sunday, or at the midnight between them.
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On this day, when Christ our paschal Lamb was sacrificed, the Church contemplates and adores the Cross of her Lord and Spouse, commemorating her own coming forth from the side of Christ as he slept on the Cross, interceding for the salvation of the world. The Celebration of the Lord's Passion is to take place in the afternoon, at round about 3pm. The cross is shown to the people and proffered for adoration. (Ref. Ordo, 2018-2019, Year C, pg 46).
"Let us admire, congratulate, rejoice, love, praise, adore; because through the death of our Redeemer we are called from darkness to light, from death to life, from exile to home, from grief to everlasting joy." (St. Augustine).
"Who is the one that is not filled with hope of obtaining confidence and courage when he gazes trustfully on the position of our Lord's crucified body? His head is bent to give us the kiss of peace, his arm extended to receive us, his hands pierced to pour his blessings upon us, his heart opened to love us, his feet nailed to the cross to soften our hearts and remain with us." (St. Bernard of Clairvaux).