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Letting Go of Holy Week

Happy Easter, everyone!

This year, Easter fell on Sunday, April 9. Since I got a new job, this is the first Holy Week and Easter where I haven’t been off for work in nearly a decade. Suffice it to say, it was a major change.

When you don’t work in the church, you have to be more intentional about how you practice your faith. Keeping up with the liturgical calendar is no longer part of your job, so you have to make an effort to keep track.

For my first Lent outside of working for the church, I was proud that I kept up with my meatless Fridays and fasting. I didn’t get the hang of my Lenten penance (working out, drinking more water) until Lent was almost over. But the good news is, I’m still going strong!

Because I was out of town most of Holy Week, I wasn’t able to do my annual traditions of helping with the foot-washing on Holy Thursday or bringing up the flowers at the Easter Vigil. Even though I attended Mass virtually, I missed not being there for those moments. But my lack of presence presented an opportunity for others to be more involved.

Sometimes we do something for so long that we (and others) can’t imagine doing something else. I remember this feeling when I left Teen Ministry two years ago after leading it for six years. But I remember why I put a transition strategy in place before I left – because I wanted someone to have the tools after I moved on.

While letting go of something can be challenging, it also makes room for something new. So often we run from the changes in our lives. But change has its purpose – it reminds us to keep living, be flexible and move. Sometimes God needs our role for someone else. And if we refuse to move, we prevent ourselves and others from growing and taking the next step.

Stepping away from my normal responsibilities during Holy Week this year allowed others to step in, which is a blessing. This doesn’t mean I can never help out with Holy Week tasks again in the future. But it does mean I have more appreciation for them and look forward to the new ways I can serve that bring me closer to God, such as this blog.

My April spiritual lesson is that there is a gift in letting go – God can make room in my life for a new way to share and exercise my faith.

Spiritual Reflection

  1. What habit or practice are you holding onto that you need to let go?
  2. What is preventing you from letting go of that habit/practice?
  3. How can your faith help you in this time of change?

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