Donna Tugwood (Submitted)

Donna Tugwood (Submitted)

Preparing our hearts during the season of Lent

“Our soul waits for the Lord; he is our help and shield. Our heart is glad in him, because we trust in his holy name. Let your steadfast love, O Lord, be upon us, even as we hope in you.” – Psalm 33:20-22

This month marked the beginning of Lent: a 40-day season of reflection before the celebrations of Easter during which was to prepare our hearts for and to draw closer to God.

During Lent, a time marked by prayer and reflection, we mirror Jesus’ sacrifice as He withdrew into the desert for 40 days. It is also an opportunity to consider our own sins as we remember how Christ suffered on our behalf, and to focus on the needs of others through acts of service.

As our world continues to experience hardship while attempting to heal from a pandemic and observing the horrors of international conflict, Lent is an opportunity to practice compassion and generosity. We should embody these virtues all year round but, during Lent, we can challenge ourselves to go a step further.

Consider donating your time, spare change, or items you no longer use to a local or global charitable organization. Make a point of teaching your children the importance of giving back to others when you have more than you need.

Smaller acts are important and meaningful too. Hold the door open for someone behind you, smile at a stranger, pick up a piece of trash from the ground, or pay for another person’s coffee. Simple gestures can make a big difference in someone else’s day.

Though negativity in the world can sometimes feel overwhelming, we can try to counteract this with positivity, thoughtfulness, kindness, and prayer.

From all of us at STAR Catholic School Division, have a blessed Lenten season.

This column was submitted by STAR Catholic Schools. Donna Tugwood ( is the local Trustee on the STAR Catholic Schools Division Board. STAR Catholic Schools has more than 4,400 students in 12 schools located in Beaumont, Drayton Valley, Leduc, Lacombe, Ponoka and Wetaskiwin.