Parishioners here at Resurrection Church have a unique opportunity this year to do something very special for Lent. Through the ‘Living The Eucharist’ Lenten renewal program, parishioners will have many opportunities to grow in their faith.
Living The Eucharist has been used by over 1,300 parishes across the United States. Parishioners love the program, ranking their participation as “excellent” or “very good” at over 90%. So Resurrection will be following a quite positive and successful track this Lent.
What is Living The Eucharist? It’s a program that explores the meaning of the Mass in deeper ways, so that parishioners can begin to connect their experience of the Eucharist with family life, with their neighbors, with their parish, and with their sense of mission. After all, through our baptisms, we have all been given access to the sacred Table of the Lord at Mass; we have also been given the mission of sharing faith with those around us.
How does Living The Eucharist work? Primarily through the small group experience. This means that parishioners can gather in small groups in various homes throughout the parish, share the Living The Eucharist material, and explore with others what our experience of the Eucharist gives us each week. Groups meet once a week for the six weeks of Lent, starting the week of February 24th, the week that contains Ash Wednesday.
These small groups will range in size between five and ten people. Leaders have come forth to volunteer to facilitate the small groups; hosts have offered their houses. These volunteers allow the parish to establish groups who will meet at different times throughout the week. Once parishioners sign up, they will be assigned a group that suits their convenience.
This means that you will be able to pick the day and time that’s convenient for you. In addition, some groups will be focused on Young Adults; the Youth Group will have their own booklets to participate in the program at their own level.
Three Things That Make Small Group Work So Special
- The readings focus on the upcoming Sunday. This means that the groups will have reflected on the Sunday readings before they come to Mass. This is not only an excellent spiritual practice to continue throughout the year, it will also make parishioners attentive to the Gospel and other readings.
- The sessions not only explore the Mass and the readings, they also teach participants how to do Lectio Divina—an ancient way to use the Scripture for
- Many people find that working in small groups improves their sense of community here at the parish. Small group work can forge friendships and sources of support that last for years!
Materials for Living The Eucharist were written by Rita Farone, a renowned writer on spirituality, the Sacraments, and church life today, and by Fr. Frank DeSiano, CSP, whom we know very well, and who wrote the very popular From Exodus to Easter weekly reflection series that is part of this program.