Let’s Begin Lent with “spirit of intimacy with the Lord”: Catholic Bishop in South Sudan


Bishop Christian Carlassare of the Catholic Diocese of Rumbek in South Sudan has called on the people of God in his Episcopal See to start off the Lenten Season with a decision to nurture a close relationship with God, seeking to maintain a prayerful spirit throughout the period.

In his Ash Wednesday homily, Bishop Carlassare described the Lenten Season as “a time of coming closer to God to understand more about our identity and life,” and that it is “not a time of sadness.”

We are invited to begin this time of Lent with this spirit of intimacy with the Lord; living also in the spirit of community, journeying together, and understanding the value of being united in a community that journeys together,” he said on February 14 at Holy Family Cathedral of his Episcopal See.

For this reason, the Italian-born member of Comboni Missionaries of the Heart of Jesus (MCCJ) said, “we celebrate this Eucharist together as a Christian community in intimacy with one another and with God, ready to discover, especially his love.”

He went on to understand the need to practice prayer, fasting, and charity as the three pillars of the Lenten Season, adding that their practice will have a positive impact on the spiritual growth of the people of God.

Focusing on prayer, the Catholic Church leader cautioned against limiting prayer life to the Season of Lent, and advocated for a prayerful lifestyle.

It is not enough to pray only during Lent; we have to pray every day of our life,” he said, and added, “But maybe during this time of Lent we can give special value to a time that we can allocate within our day for God.”

Bishop Carlassare urged the people of God to understand prayer as “a work that puts us in contact with Him, that restores our friendship with Him, that allows us to return to Him from the many things we do during the day and sometime we may also forget that it is there that we are living in Him, that He is the one that give us strength.

Prayer also “restores our intimacy with God; it opens ourselves to what is above us,” he added.

The Catholic Church leader, who started his Priestly Ministry in South Sudan in the country’s Catholic Diocese of Malakal in 2005 went on to reflect on fasting, noting that “it is something that we have difficulty to understand, especially the value of fasting in a country in which we are all fasting every day in a way; not only fasting from food, but maybe also fasting for all those goods or resources that feel like we will need and we don’t have.

Christians can train themselves in fasting because “it is not just taking away superfluous things or bad things from us, but it is really entering in contact deeply with ourselves and being more in intimacy with ourselves.

Credits to: ACIAFRICA

Photo Credit: Fr. Luka Dor/Rumbek Diocese

Date Published:

19 Febbraio 2024


Alice, Officer


Article Tags:

Latest news, South Sudan, Solidarity, Lenten season, Prayer

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