A Lent Like No Other - Penance in a Pandemic

This blog begins our Lent 2021 series of reflections on the Franciscan Intellectual-Spiritual Tradition by a variety of women and men Franciscans.

We are in the season of Lent 2021, and many, perhaps most of us, feel very uneasy. We have been living through a pandemic for more than a year now; most of us know someone who has suffered from COVID-19, and perhaps we have family members and friends who have died from it. Many of our neighbors have lost their jobs; climate change has caused storms, floods, and wildfires around the world; many of our schools and gathering places are closed, and painfully, even our churches are impacted by modified rules about gathering for Mass or they may be closed all together. Public discourse can be unkind as both our national body politic and even our Roman Catholic Church have become sadly polarized. Given all of this, we

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