Start your engines
Kit made mention of how much Forgiveness Vespers assisted him in getting geared up for Lent...I heartily agree. There just seems to be something profoundly right about how we transition into this repentant season. First, as most of us know, the Church lovingly gives us warning and preparatory signs of its approach. And then we gather as a community to "ring in" the lenten season, somewhat like New Yorkers might gather at Times Square to ring in the New Year, though I suppose we are a little more sober and subdued.
The arena of the virtues has been opened.
Let all who wish to struggle for the prize now enter,
girding themselves for the noble contest of the Fast;
for those that strive lawfully are justly crowned.
Taking up the armor of the Cross,
let us make war against the enemy.
Yes...and we begin this warfare with forgiveness. Before setting sail upon the sea of the Fast, we unite ourselves to one another in reconciliation. Seems paradoxical to begin warfare with forgiveness.
...offered by Dn. fdj, a sinner at 6:43 AM [+]