Readings and poetry for the first Sunday of Lent here:
Immediately afterwards the Spirit drove Jesus out into the wilderness, and he remained there for forty days, and was tempted by Satan. He was with the wild beasts, and the angels looked after him.
— Mark 1:12-13
The rain fell on the earth for forty days and forty nights.
– Genesis 7:12
The merit of a fast day is in the charity dispensed then.
Into the desert I was led,
Where I fasted without substance;
The devil bade me make stones my bread,
To have me break my true love’s dance:
Sing, O my love,
O my love, my love, my love;
This I have done for my true love.
— English carol, 17th c.
When did we come to visit you on your sickbed or in jail?
St. Bonaventure said that after the long fast of our Lord in the desert, when the angels came to minister to him, they went first to the Blessed Mother to see what she had on her stove, and got the soup she had prepared and transported it to our Lord, who relished it the more because his mother had prepared it. Of course.
— Dorothy Day, 20th c.
O Lord, throughout these forty days
You prayed and kept the fast;
Inspire repentance for our sins,
And free us from the past.
Be with us through this season, Lord,
And all our earthly days,
That when the final Easter dawns,
We join in heaven’s praise.
— Gilbert E. Doan, 20th c.
Let us fast in such a way that we lavish our lunches on the poor.
– Caesarius of Arles, 6th c.