Thu. Oct 22nd, 2020

Happy New Year! I’ll be honest, I am not a big celebrator of the new year. For me, it’s still Christmas, as it truly is for all Christians. Keep that Christmas Tree up until January 6th, the Feast of the Epiphany. Continue to enjoy the Christmas Season. After all, it is a pretty big deal that God became man so that He could carry the weight of our sins to the Cross. This is a good time to keep watching Christmas movies that you may have recorded or have on DVD or other technology. You may even consider hosting a Christmas Party during this time.
Switching gears, do you make resolutions going into the new year? I think it is a good thing to make resolutions, but I have never found New Year Resolutions to be effective. I get to about Jan. 3 or 4 and I realize that my resolution means I will never have (whatever I resolved to give up) again. The permanence of it causes me to lose resolve and cave. I would like to suggest that you save up your resolutions for Lent. The beauty of resolutions during Lent is that I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Just about the time that I am getting really sick of doing without M&M’s I look at the calendar and realize that I only have 23 more days (or whatever the actual number is). I can do it for 23 days. I can’t do it forever, but I can do it for another 23 days. What is really interesting is that once I have done without something for 40 days (or more like 46) I may well have kicked that particular habit. This also works in terms of adding some prayer or good work to my life. Maybe I decide to go to daily Mass during Lent. Perhaps I want to read Scripture every morning. Perhaps I want to volunteer at a food pantry once a week or month. By the end of Lent I may well have formed the habit and it may continue indefinitely.
I hope that you and your family draw ever closer to the Word-Made-Flesh during 2020.
— Pat Arensberg is the Director of the Office for Evangelization and Family Life. Email him at
For more information concerning the events of this office, visit us at

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