What You Need to Know About Lent

What You Need to Know About Lent

EACH YEAR CATHOLICS (and many Christians) commemorate the season of Lent, a special time of preparation before the glorious celebration of Easter. Here are the basics of our Lenten journey toward Easter.

According to the norms established by the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD, Easter Sunday falls each year on the first Sunday following the first full moon of Spring. Easter Sunday is celebrated this year on April 12; counting 46 days back, we get Ash Wednesday, February 26.

Lent lasts 40 days in imitation of Jesus fasting in the desert, and ends on Holy Thursday. The six Sundays in Lent are not considered part of the official “Lenten fast”. Holy Thursday marks the official end of Lent and the beginning of the “Triduum” that culminates at the Easter Vigil.

The three pillars of Lent are prayer, fasting and almsgiving. Lent is a time to practice these essential spiritual practices and clean out our interior house.

Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are days of fasting while all Fridays in Lent are days of abstinence from meat*.

Philip Kosloski, Lent is almost here! Here’s what you need to know
Original in Aleteia.org, January 26, 2018. Used with permission.