Lent 2019


Lenten Regulations

All Fridays during Lent are days of abstinence for Catholics. Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are days of fasting and abstinence.
Fasting is to be observed by all 18 years of age and older, who have not yet celebrated their 59th birthday. When fasting, a person is permitted to eat one full meal. Two smaller meals may also be taken, but not to equal a full meal. Eating between meals is not permitted, but liquids, including milk and juices, are allowed.
Abstinence is observed by all 14 years of age and older. On days of abstinence, no meat is allowed. Note that when health or ability to work would be seriously affected, the law does not oblige. When in doubt concerning fast and abstinence, the parish priest should be consulted.
Fasting, almsgiving, and prayer are the three traditional disciplines of Lent. The faithful and catechumens should take these practices seriously in a spirit of penance and of preparation for baptism or of renewal of baptism at Easter.

Source: USCCB. Visit USCCB.org Lent pages to find more Lenten information.

Looking for something to do this Lenten season? Below are some suggestions.

Invitation to Grow in Our Faith

While recognizing your many family, work, and social commitments, the Forming Intentional Discipleship and Adult Faith Formation teams want to invite you to take advantage of the many opportunities available to you in our Holy Redeemer-Immaculate Conception Collaborative to become ever more intentional disciples of Christ in your daily lives. This Lent please consider participating in the “Soup and Spirit” Lecture Series and/or the Collaborative Mission on Holiness. After Easter the Collaborative offers the Discovering Christ video series and discussions. If you prefer to pray and reflect on the written word or inspirational videos in the privacy of your home, take advantage of the Collaborative’s offer to sign up for FORMED, a free online resource on faith formation for Catholics; or consider praying with the daily Mass Scriptures (listed each week in the bulletin), using the Lectio Divina method as described on the Collaborative website: hriccatholic.org. Whether or not you can participate in any of these offerings, let us together pray and work as one to proclaim the Gospel, confident that we are empowered and enlivened by the Holy Spirit to be the Body of Christ in this world.

Stations of the Cross

All are welcome to join in at this traditional Lenten devotion.
Stations of the Cross will be held every Friday during Lent beginning at 3:30 p.m. at Immaculate Conception Church, Newburyport and
at 7:00pm at Nativity Church, Merrimac. 
Before Stations at Nativity, a "Simple Supper" will be served in the hall beginning at 6:00. There is no cost for the meal. All are welcome.

Collaborative Mission

Save the Dates: March 25–27 is our annual Collaborative Mission. Each night begins at 7:00 p.m. at IC Church, 42 Green Street, Newburyport.

This year’s topic is Holiness: a Lifestyle Change. All are invited to attend.
Presented by Fr. Michael J. Alello (padrehooch.com)

Topics include:

  • Rehydrate Your Life: Beginning the journey towards holiness
  • Wrestling with God: Overcoming injury & experiencing healing
  • Marathon Training: Practical ways to get into the race

Ukrainian Egg-Painting Party

Get Fired up (Literally) Making a Painted Egg! This Eastern Orthodox Lenten tradition of meticulously decorating eggs is offered to adults only since it requires fire. Facilitators will direct the creative tradition of applying rich dyes to melted beeswax-applied designs.

No previous experience necessary. Limited to 24 participants.

Time: April 6, 9:30 a.m.–noon (snow date April 13)

Place: St. Louis Hall, IC Parish Center

Fee: $10.00

Door prizes, collation, and fellowship! All necessary equipment available for use. Your masterpiece to take home.

Sign-up required. Call Mary to reserve your seat (978-462-6191) or email: [email protected]. Hurry: spaces are filling fast, so call now to reserve your place.

{Sponsored by the Adult Faith Formation Team}

Annual Lenten Soup & Spirit Lecture Series

Join the Adult Faith Formation Team for a DVD/live lecture series on traditional Catholic moral teaching that refutes modern moral confusion. Ponder presentations on the
7 Deadly Sins and their contrasting 7 Virtues. Enjoy simple food, fellowship, and food for thought. Each of the four presentations will be offered twice: Thursday evenings at Nativity Hall, Merrimac (7:00–8:30pm and repeated Fridays at IC's St. Louis Hall, Newburyport (noon–1:30pm).

March 14 & 15: Introduction and Pride/Humility

March 21 & 22: Envy/Admiration and Anger/Forgiveness

April 4 & 5: Sloth/Zeal and Greed/Generosity

April 11 & 12: Gluttony/Asceticism and Lust/Chastity

Together let’s make this HRIC’s best Lent ever: clear teaching + practical advice + honest dialogue = conversion of heart and mind!

Centering Prayer for Lent

Our Lenten reflection on Jesus’ words and works reveals Jesus’ intimate relationship with his Father. We see the depth of Jesus’ faith, trust, and love for God. This relationship developed through prayer. Often we see Jesus withdraw from the crowds and even his apostles to pray alone in silence. Jesus tells us “When you pray, go into your private room, shut yourself in, and pray to your Father who is in that secret place, and your Father who sees all that is done in secret will reward you” (Matt 6:6). In Centering Prayer you enter your private room.

Lent is a time to follow Jesus more closely and learn from the fully human Jesus how to pray by entering your secret room, spending time that places God at the center of your life, opening yourself to a loving Father, surrendering your will and in trust allowing God to transform you. This is how we pray as we Center in silence.

Through prayer, Jesus, strengthened and moved by his Father’s love for him could willingly surrender his human life for love and reveal our God to us. Through the Paschal Mystery, Jesus of Nazareth was transformed to become Jesus the Christ. We too can be transformed through prayer that unites us to God. Lent is the time to pray as Jesus taught us and enter into the Paschal Mystery, receiving new life in God through death to self.

Centering Prayer is an ancient Christian practice available to all who seek transformation through a more intimate relationship with God. This daily practice deepens our faith as we come to better know our God as one who loves us unconditionally just as we are and trust God has plans to give us a future of hope.

Centering Prayer helps us say to the Father, “Not my will but yours be done” (Lk. 22: 42). Please consider joining us for weekly group Centering Prayer and let God move you closer to him. We gather Wednesday evenings from 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm in Conference Room 209 for 30 minutes of Centering Prayer and 30 minutes of Lectio Divina. All are welcome. Please contact me if you are interested in learning more about this simple prayer of resting in God.

Contact Elizabeth McCarthy with questions: 978-462-7483.

Women’s Evening of Prayer

The next Women’s Evening of Prayer will be Wednesday, March 20 at 7:00 p.m. at St. Ann Church. All women of the collaborative are invited to attend this evening of prayer and song. Invite your friends.

Lenten Food Drive

Holy Redeemer Parish will be having a food drive during Lent to benefit the senior centers. We will start collecting donations from
Ash Wednesday until Palm Sunday. We will be collecting nonperishable dry goods, canned goods (Please check expiration dates.) and gift certificates to local markets. Donations may be left in the backs of both churches.

Helping our Homeless

Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for his deed.
The Newburyport YWCA has conducted its annual census of the homeless in our community. And, while statistics are not yet available, it is expected there are close to 500 homeless people in our community and over half of them are children! In an effort to ease the suffering and as a Collaborative-wide Lenten observance, we again will be collecting “Homeless Care Packs” in all three churches. A Homeless Care Pack is a one-gallon Ziploc bag filled with personal care items for men and women. They will be distributed to local agencies serving our homeless, including our own Pelican Intervention Fund, St. Vincent de Paul, Pettengill House, Salvation Army, YWCA, and Community Service, as well as distributed by our youth attending the annual 20-hour famine. Travel-size personal care items are the best size and can be found in most pharmacies in the area. There will be a collection box at the entrance of each church. For more information or to help, please contact Jonathan Temple, 978-809-9337 or [email protected]. Thank you for your generosity and compassion.
Items needed
Shampoo     Toothbrush     Toothpaste     Deodorant     Razor     Socks     Gloves     Shaving Cream
Cough drops     Protein bars     Soap     Life Savers candy     Disposable face cloths     Kleenex packs
Hand sanitizer     Feminine hygiene products (Women)     Umbrellas     Antiseptic wipes     Please: no loose items and no mouthwash.

Daily Inspiration

If you are looking for some Lenten inspiration from online sources, try these:

FORMED Lenten reflections: https://formed.org/promo/lent-registration

Bishop Barron’s 2019 Lenten Gospel Reflections: https://www.lentreflections.com/

Loyola Press free ebook, 7 Ways to Practice Lent: https://www.loyolapress.com/our-catholic-faith/liturgical-year/lent/articles/articles/seven-ways-to-practice-lent-ebook

LPi Lenten Reflections: http://go.4lpi.com/2019-LentenReflections_SignUp.html

Lent in 3 minutes Busted Halo: https://bustedhalo.com/video/watch-lent-3-minutes

Dynamic Catholic Lenten reflections: https://dynamiccatholic.com/bestlentever

Loyola Press Living Lent Daily emails: https://www.loyolapress.com/…/liturg…/lent/living-lent-daily


Daily Mass Schedule

Daily Mass is celebrated at the following locations:
Mondays, 9:00 at Nativity, Merrimac
Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, 7:15 at Immaculate Conception, Newburyport
Fridays, 9:00 at St. Ann, West Newbury
Our weekend Mass schedule can be found here.

Eucharistic Adoration

Immaculate Conception St. James Chapel, Wednesdays at 6:00 p.m. and Fridays at 8:00 a.m.