Do you really make proper use of Lent?
Pre-Vatican II Catholics had more help in using Lent properly. Not just the more rigorous disciplines, but sounder preaching and a wealth of solid spiritual books -- such as this magnificent treasury of Lenten wisdom compiled from the sermons of St. Thomas Aquinas. Now it’s back in print for the first time in 60 years.
In the simple, non-technical language he used for preaching, St. Thomas shows how to detach yourself from the things of this world and refocus on things above, using as models the penitential examples of Our Lord and Our Lady. He also offers detailed practical advice on how to avoid temptation, weed out vices, and cultivate virtues. To wit:
St. Thomas provides 63 Scripture-based Lenten meditations, one for each day from Septuagesima Sunday through Holy Saturday. Averaging two pages in length, these sermons are perfect for silent meditation at any time.
- Conditions to be observed when we pray -- patterned on Christ’s own instructions and example
- Five evils we incur through sin
- The spiritual usefulness of physical acts of humility
- Idleness: Why Our Lord condemned it so strongly
- The two purposes of fasting
- How Christ exemplified all virtues on the cross, the “pulpit from which He taught all mankind”
- The true meaning of Christ’s warning to be “watchful” -- different from simply waiting
- Why the pain suffered by Our Lord was the greatest pain possible in this life
- Factors that will determine whether our heavenly reward will be lesser or greater
- Why Our Lord went down to Limbo. Four things we may learn from it
- Why souls in Hell are not freed by the Passion of Christ
- Christ’s fourfold humiliation on the Cross -- and the fourfold exaltation it merited Him
- The six ways in which the Blood of Christ is “precious”
- Four ways Our Lady suffered bitterly in the Passion
- Christ’s Passion as the perfect example of charity, patience, humility, obedience, and detachment
Lenten spiritual guidance from St. Thomas -- A small sampling of topics: On Reforming Ourselves * Hardness of Heart * The Example of Christ Crucified * The Need to Be Watchful * On Doing Good * Our Lord’s Prayer in the Garden * How Christ’s Passion Freed Us from the Punishment Due to Sin * How Christ’s Passion Opened the Gates to Heaven * The Precious Blood * The Burial of Christ * On Being Buried Spiritually * Our Lady’s Suffering in the Passion * How Christ’s Passion Serves Us as an Example * The Last Supper * The Death of Christ