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Feb 17, 2024 236 Mary Therese Emmons, USA
Lenten reflections

Giving-up Soda Pop for Lent

I’m not always successful at finishing what I start. Lent is one of my biggest, annual failures. I have many inexcusable excuses—I’m lazy, selfish, and forgetful. Ash Wednesday always begins the same—enthusiastically with the best of intentions. But very shortly into the season, I realize I’ve over-promised God. It’s not that I can’t live without coffee or chocolate, it’s that one small slip leads to another, and suddenly I’m telling myself I’ll just try harder next year.

The next year, however, often leads to giving up something I feel would be easy to replace or deny myself. Like the year I gave up soda pop, but substituted it with a carbonated alcoholic beverage so it would feel less like cheating.

It was this particular Lent that I realized I need to give God so much more, and I made the decision to also add to my Lenten journey. Adding for me meant reading about the suffering and death of Our Lord. Reading, in addition to self-deprivation, enriched my Lent tremendously. Keeping the suffering Our Lord willingly endured for our salvation at the forefront of my mind has made my Lenten seasons much more meaningful, and easier to pass up that chocolate bar.

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Mary Therese Emmons

Mary Therese Emmons is a busy mother of four teenagers. She has spent more than 25 years as a catechist at her local parish, teaching the Catholic faith to young children. She lives with her family in Montana, USA.

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