From the story of creation in the Book of Genesis, throughout our salvation history, the image of light pervades.  God is constantly encouraging us to confront and overcome the darkness that we might live in the light -- that we might live in God.  In the birth and teaching and death and resurrection of Christ Jesus, we have become children of the light.  Even if at times we forget that, or behave in ways that contradict our exalted status.  Lent provides us another opportunity to reflect upon our lives, what we are doing, what is important to us as measured by the time and attention we give to the various aspects of our lives.  And it invites us to move towards the light that is God, and away from the darkness that hinders us in our relationship to God, to ourselves and to others.

During this Lenten season, everyone is invited to identify one or two things they might give up, and to identify one or two things they might do which would bring about a positive change in their lives.  The Pastoral Staff came up with a list which can either be a "pick one or two from each list", or simply something to get your own creative juices flowing.   What would be most helpful in your own life to try to give up this Lent -- for a day?  A week?  A month?  The whole Lenten season?  And what one or two things might you do that would bring a positive change into your life for a day? A week? A month? The whole Lenten season.....and maybe for good?

Ideas for Things to Give Up
1. Social media
2. Phone
3. Television
4. Dessert
5. Video games/computer
6. Engaging in negative political conversation
7. Electronics when you're with your family
8. A dinner out (and donate the money to a charity)
9. Complaining/whining
10. Malicious speech
11. Making accusations without first investigating their validity
12. Alcohol
13. Raising your voice
14. Cursing
15. Diet Coke

Ideas for Things to Do
1. Sign up to feed the Homeless
2. Visit residents at the Little Sisters of the Poor  (773.935.9600)
3. Help with the Almoners program ( sign up)
4. Shovel, shop or rake for a neighbor
5. Bring a meal to a family/someone in need
6. Volunteer at Lakeview Pantry  (773.525.1777)
7. Volunteer at Chicago Food Depository  (773.247.3663)
8. Spend more time in prayer
9. Read daily Lenten reflections (e.g. Take Five for Faith)
10. Do spiritual reading throughout Lent (Grab a booklet at the church entrances to take home.)
11. Make a list of individuals who are ill or suffering (physically or emotionally). Pray for one individual on the list each day of Lent. Consider putting them on our parish prayer list.
12. Volunteer at the Lincoln Park Community Shelter
600 W. Fullerton,  773.549.6111
13. Volunteer to serve supper to the homeless at St. Vincent Center (Catholic Charities), 721 N. LaSalle St.,  312.655.7322.
14. Volunteer for the Refugee Resettlement Program ( Catholic Charities), 4802 N. Broadway,  312.655.7856
15.  Smile and make eye contact with someone you don't know each day of Lent.

Have any other ideas?  Let us know and we will share them!  office@stjosaphatparish.org




Get Daily Reflections Here!
Want daily reflections for Lent? Sign up for "Take 5 for Faith" on our website.
Almoners' Program
We need volunteers to distribute McDonalds Gift Cards after Masses, please sign up here!
High School Sophomore / Junior Needed
We are looking for two high school sophomores or juniors who are looking for experience in service and leadership, to take responsibility for the Children's Liturgy of the Word program at the 10:00 am Masses. Please contact MaryJane@stjosaphatparish.org
Homeless Outreach:
Volunteers
Signup to help with the Homeless Outreach Program HERE!

Please pray for...
Please pray for our RCIA candidates as they get closer to full initiation into the Catholic Church at the Easter Vigil. Seth Ebarra will receive Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist and Matthew Ross will receive Confirmation and Eucharist.