ASIA/MALAYSIA - Lent dedicated to the protection of life and creation

Wednesday, 9 March 2022 lent   local churches   environment   human life  

Penang (Agenzia Fides) - Care for life and creation is at the center of the Lenten program in the diocese of Penang and will be for three years.
Focusing on the theme “Together we renew and rebuild”, the Diocese of Penang announced a Lenten theme which will be valid for three years (2022-2024). For 2022, the goal is "to restore hope to those who feel hopeless, to be salt and light for all and to restore the freshness of Mother", Bishop Sebastian Francis explains in a note sent to Fides.
"In the past two years - the Bishop noted, referring to the pandemic - we have all embarked on an extraordinary journey, a journey touched by doubts but also animated by deep faith. One way or another, we have experienced the best and the worst of what humanity has to offer. However, together we have overcome some of the most difficult situations and have proved our resilience".
For the year 2022, "on the Lenten journey, the time has come to renew ourselves. To put things in order, to put things according to the right priorities", he adds. While everyone is still battling the Covid-19 pandemic, people need to look to the future, "the Holy Spirit is moving forward, therefore it will not leave us behind": "We need to renew ourselves, our family, our community and the environment. Therefore, we will focus on three realities: the family, the community and the environment. We will do this by centering on Jesus Christ and understanding his plan for us. In this way, we can help renew the people around us. We do this by offering our time, our prayers, our fasting, our hearts and through alms", says Bishop Francis in the pastoral letter sent to the faithful during Lent. "Many have lost everything and feel hopeless. As followers of Christ, we must be agents of hope and peace. We are also guardians of Mother Earth. Therefore, we must also preserve our environment. So much has already been lost and contaminated, but by God's grace, even the time of lockdown also allowed the environment to flourish. We now have a responsibility to maintain freedom and beauty for all of God's creation". "We are united, we walk together, in a synodal Church. This is a collaborative effort. People of all races, religions, languages, economic backgrounds. We will work together; we will walk together. It is time to put our differences aside and walk hand in hand. It starts with us. In this time of Lent, in the year 2022 of our Lord, we are the heartbeat of Jesus Christ", wrote Bishop Francis. The Lenten journey, he concluded, is "an opportunity for justice, for almsgiving to make peace, for prayer for the change of humble and grateful hearts". The Diocese of Penang covers five states in the northern region of Malaysia, namely Penang, Perlis, Kedah, Perak and Kelantan. (PA) (Agenzia Fides, 9/3/2022)