Malankara World

Great Lent Today

Day 1 - First Monday of the Great Lent

Shubkono (Reconciliation) Service

Our Holy Church specifies today as the day of reconciliation (Shubkono). What a great way to start the Great Lent by unloading our sins - both to God, to our family and friends. It is a beautiful service. Please read the following articles and the references below to get going.

Reconciliation and Healing

Preparing for The Sacrament of Reconciliation

Prayer for Lent - Reconciliation

Psalm 51 - Repentance Prayer

A reconciliation prayer for the great lent

You can find several articles of interest in the Malankara World Section on Baptism

In His Steps - A Lenten Series Begins Today

Today: Nazareth: The Great Journey Begins

Daily Meditation: A very special day

We begin our Lenten journey aware of where we are going.
We want to enter into the Passion, Death and Resurrection of Jesus for us more fully.
That is the purpose of our journey. It is why we mark our heads with his cross.
It is why we fast today and abstain from meat.

Our Lenten program is not an effort to save ourselves.
We have been saved by his sacrifice.
Our self-denial helps us, in the darkness that surrounds us,
to prepare ourselves to receive his light.
For this is a journey to the Easter font,
where we will renew the promises of our Baptism,
remembering that in dying with him in the waters of Baptism,
we are re-born with him to everlasting life.

This year's journey begins today.

Yet even now, says the LORD,
return to me with your whole heart,
with fasting, and weeping, and mourning;

Rend your hearts, not your garments,
and return to the LORD, your God.
For gracious and merciful is he,
slow to anger, rich in kindness,
and relenting in punishment.
- Joel 2:12-13

Intercessions:

Today God our Father brings us to the beginning of Lent.
We pray that in this time of salvation
he will fill us with the Holy Spirit, purify our hearts,
and strengthen us in love.
Let us humbly ask him:
Lord, give us your Holy Spirit.

May we be filled and satisfied,
- by the word which you give us.

Teach us to be loving not only in great and exceptional moments,
- but above all in the ordinary events of daily life.

May we abstain from what we do not really need,
- and help our brothers and sisters in distress.

May we bear the wounds of your Son in our bodies,
- for through his body he gave us life.

Prayer:

Lord,
it feels like we are embarking on a Lenten journey together, you and I.
The beautiful words in the today's prayer talk about
the "quiet remembrance of our need for redemption."
That feels like what I am looking for -
or what you are looking for in me.
I want to remember how much I need you in my life
and how much my life needs redemption.
I want to remember it clearly and
in the background of my day today and all through Lent.

On this special day,
may my small sacrifices in fasting be a way to clear away
the clutter in my life to see you more clearly.
May my longing for meat and other food,
help me to focus my life today more outside myself.
Let me be aware of those who are in so much more suffering than I am
and may I be aware of them as the brothers and sisters you have placed in my life.

Lord, I know there is darkness within me and around me.
Bless these days with your Word.
Let your Light shine in the darkness.
Help me long for that Light
until we celebrate it at the Vigil six weeks from now.

And most of all Lord,
Help me remember where I have come from and where I am going.
May I acknowledge to you my sins
and my deep need for your loving forgiveness and grace.
I pray that this Lenten season will make me so much more aware
of how much I need your healing in my life.

May the Lord bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen.

(Source: Creighton University Online Ministries)

Preface for Meditation
by Prince Mathew

Great Lent is a time for the nourishment of our inner being. Abstinences during Lent indicate the shift of focus and we give extra care to the nourishment of our spirit. During Lent we give more time for Bible reading, meditation and Prayer so that our spirit is purified and enriched by God. Then the Holy Spirit who resides in our spirit can smoothly guide us. Good deeds and words will flow from the inner springboard which is purified and strengthened by Christ. ‘Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.’ (St. Mathew 5:8).

Lent is a period of reconciliation with others. Fasting is an act of worship presented to God, and God does not accept the offering and worship of a person who quarrels with others. Instead, He asks him to go and make peace with his brother before coming to worship and present offerings in front of God’ altar. Fasting is an appropriate time to evaluate our relationship with others. As we ask God to forgive us our sins, we must also forgive those who have sinned against us.

May God grant us a blessed fast by which we can grow in a life of prayer, asceticism, and repentance. May we always increase in doing acts of mercy and living in peace with one another.

Bible Reading

Fifty-Day Gospel Planner
(Read all Gospels during the Great Lent)

Morning

Shub-khono

Gospel Readings:

Matthew 4:1-11 (KJV)

1Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.

2And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred.

3And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.

4But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

5Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple,

6And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone.

7Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.

8Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;

9And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.

10Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.

11Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.

Matthew 18:18-35 (KJV)

18Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

19Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven.

20For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

21Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times?

22Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.

23Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened unto a certain king, which would take account of his servants.

24And when he had begun to reckon, one was brought unto him, which owed him ten thousand talents.

25But forasmuch as he had not to pay, his lord commanded him to be sold, and his wife, and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made.

26The servant therefore fell down, and worshipped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay thee all.

27Then the lord of that servant was moved with compassion, and loosed him, and forgave him the debt.

28But the same servant went out, and found one of his fellow-servants, which owed him an hundred pence: and he laid hands on him, and took him by the throat, saying, Pay me that thou owest.

29And his fellow-servant fell down at his feet, and besought him, saying, Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all.

30And he would not: but went and cast him into prison, till he should pay the debt.

31So when his fellow-servants saw what was done, they were very sorry, and came and told unto their lord all that was done.

32Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me:

33Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellow-servant, even as I had pity on thee?

34And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him.

35So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.

Bible Verse for the day:

St. Matthew 18:35 "This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart."

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