John 10:31–42


For years, in religious life, I’ve lived in communities that continue to keep the traditional Catholic practice of abstaining from meat on Fridays. Not just the Fridays of Lent, mind you, but Fridays year-round! It’s not an especially heavy penance, but it does require intentionality. When we embrace a shared penance like Friday abstinence, it’s an opportunity to live differently. It has the potential to be an evangelical moment among colleagues and friends. Each time we accept the penance, we say yes — not to fish — but to Christ. For his sake, we curb our desires by joining our small sacrifices to his one sacrifice on the cross. It might be a little penance, but the stakes are high. In the end, this is how we build up self-mastery and live discipleship.


Lord Jesus, may I see in your suffering and death the love you have for each and every person. Give me the desire to be united to you in this love by undertaking greater works of penance. Amen.


Pray the Divine Mercy chaplet today. Use the chaplet as an aid to meditate on the sacrifice of Christ on the cross.

We look forward to praying with you again tomorrow.