Easter Sunday this year is April 17.
Which means Lent is upon us today.
Once again, the Church provides us with a time specifically for repentance and spiritual renewal. It symbolically begins with the imposition of ashes upon our foreheads and the admonition of "Repent, and believe in the Gospel" or "Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return". It concretely begins with the observance of the fasting and abstinence laws during these next forty days. It spiritually begins with focused acts of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving.
I have mentioned before I agree with those pundits who say we have lost a sense of sin both collectively and individually. Just remember one the Gospel readings you may hear during this time hints at that blindness. Whether we want to admit it or not, we can always do more to respond to the universal call to holiness. The Augustinian warning about our salvation comes into sharper focus now.
Take heed of the First Reading at Mass today: Joel 2:12-18. (If you were unable to assist at Mass today, pick up your Bible and meditate upon it.) Honestly ask yourself if you are the Pharisee or the Tax Collector (cf. Luke 18:9-14). Examine your conscience. While we all fall short of the glory of God, the first step is to humbly admit that and strive for a sincere Act of Contrition.
We are striving to be perfect as our Heavenly Father is.
We are given another opportunity to commit more to that ideal.
We are now on the way to Jerusalem with Jesus Christ.