SpiritualDirection.com / Catholic Spiritual Direction

Preparing for Lent Part 3

February 13, 2015 by  
Filed under Dan Burke, DI Radio, Lent, Melissa Elson, Show Notes

Preparing for Lent Part 3

Preparing for Lent Part 3

Segment 1

  • preparing for Lent part 3Our last episode the discussion focused on preparing for Lent and participating in the sacraments during the Lenten season.
  • Began talking about the “Spiritual Self Evaluation” chapter in Navigating the Interior Life.
  • Sacraments are the foundation of our relationship with God, and prayer draws us more deeply into the sacraments.
  • What is the state of my prayer life?
  • Important practices to begin: praying the rosary, mental prayer, examination of conscience.
  • Dan mentions his new book coming out Finding God Through Meditation by St. Peter of Alcántara to enhance your prayer life.
  • What is your root sin (aka dominant defect, predominant fault, dominant fault)?
  • You may follow capital sins listed in Catechism, but in Scripture (1 John 2:16) these sins are bundled into three main categories, which are the basis of the self-evaluation in Navigating the Interior Life.
  • Purpose of the self-evaluation – how can we empty ourselves of the things that hinder our love of God and hinder the dwelling of God in us, and fill ourselves with all of those things that draw us closer to Him.

Segment 2

  • St. Teresa of Avila, “This body of ours has one fault, the more you indulge it, the more things it discovers to be essential to it.”
  • Appetites are insatiable.
  • Quotes St. John of the Cross Ascent of Mount Carmel first book, chapter 11, paragraph 4. 
  • Definitions of the three categories of sin: Pride – excessive love of one’s own excellence or desired excellence. Vanity – excessive concern for and seeking our security in how we are perceived. Sensuality – seeking our security and self-worth in possessions, comfort, or the avoidance of discomfort (real or perceived).
  • Example of pride – refusing or resisting assent to others without a satisfactory explanation.
  • Example of anger – if I don’t get my way, or I am not taken into account in a particular decision.
  • Complete this self-evaluation in front of the Blessed Sacrament.
  • Image in book of farmer removing large rocks before he can get to the smaller ones.
  • Melissa’s 5 Ways to Prepare for Lent:
    • Go through self-evaluation and examination of conscience.
    • Go to confession.
    • Make a strong commitment to God about your Lenten promises in front of the Blessed Sacrament.
    • Make your plan, including prayer, fasting, and almsgiving.
    • Pray for the grace to follow through with your commitments.
  • Never give up or be discouraged. The enemy is always looking to keep you from God. Never change your spiritual resolution; double-down and try harder. Go to confession if you do fall.
  • Offer Mass intentions to fulfill these commitments to the Lord.
  • This is not about a checklist. Do not become like the Pharisees, outwardly practicing of faith, but nothing inward.
  • In the end, we want God to say, “Well done,” because we have loved Him and because we know Him and He knows us.


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About Dan Burke

Dan is the President of the Avila Foundation, the parent organization of SpiritualDirection.com, the Avila Institute for Spiritual Formation, Divine Intimacy Radio and Divine Intimacy Radio - Resources Edition, Into the Deep Parish Programs, the Apostoli Viae (Apostles of the Way) Community, the High Calling Seminary Preparation Program, and the FireLight Student Leadership Formation Program, author of the award-winning book, Navigating the Interior Life - Spiritual Direction and the Journey to God, Finding God Through Meditation-St. Peter of Alcantara, 30 Days with Teresa of Avila, Into the Deep, Living the Mystery of Merciful Love: 30 Days with Thérèse of Lisieux, and his newest book The Contemplative Rosary with St. John Paul II and St. Teresa of Avila. In 2018, he launched the annual Avila Summit held at Hanceville, Alabama. Beyond his "contagious" love for Jesus and His Church, he is a grateful husband, father of four, and grandfather of one, the President and Chief Operating Officer of EWTN News, Inc., a regular co-host on Register Radio, a writer, speaker and pilgrimage director who provides online spiritual formation and travels to share his conversion story and the great riches that the Church provides us through authentic Catholic spirituality. Dan has been featured on EWTN's Journey Home program and numerous radio programs.

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