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Celebrate the Lenten Season with SXU


Saint Xavier University (SXU) is celebrating the Lenten season with reflection, service and spiritual preparation. Through prayer, fasting and almsgiving and various special events, campus opportunities will enrich the community's commemoration of the Resurrection.

Jenny DeVivo, Ph.D., executive director of Mission and Heritage, reflected on what Lent means to her. "Richard Rohr says, 'We cannot attain the presence of God because we're already totally in the presence of God. What's absent is awareness.' For me, Lent is a time when the whole Christian body goes on retreat together and practices paying attention to the constant and enveloping presence of God," said DeVivo. 

Throughout the Lenten season, prayer, observation and worship groups will meet in the McDonough Chapel for eucharistic liturgy, rosary and Stations of the Cross. Faith sharing communities will congregate in Rubloff Hall and McCarthy Lounge, and Catholic Fellowship will gather in faith at the Robert and Mary Rita Murphy Stump Library. Soup and Stations, an event featuring fellowship over a soup luncheon, will be held March 6 and 27.

The community is encouraged to give back by participating in the Tau Sigma Honor Society sock drive by donating socks to the homeless. Rice bowls for collecting Lenten alms will also be available in the Mercy Ministry Center. The Sisters of Mercy invite the community to join them for Mercy Meatless Mondays, an action rooted in their Critical Concern for the Earth, which encourages individuals to work zealously toward the sustainability of all life by caring for Earth's ecosystems.

The SXU community can also participate in the core values of compassion, service and hospitality by volunteering at the Greater Chicago Food Depository on March 21 or getting involved in the campus project Service with the Sisters on March 23.

Deirdre Kleist, director of Campus Ministry, said, "Lent is a great opportunity to intentionally reconnect with your faith. It's a time for inward reflection through prayer, practicing discipline and sacrifice through fasting and outward service to the community through almsgiving. Each person's experience of Lent looks different, so through Campus Ministry, we try to offer a wide variety of ways to engage in these three core pillars –prayer, fasting and almsgiving—in the hope that everyone can find a way to make the season meaningful."

Lent is a penitential season during which the SXU community has abundant opportunities to grow, connect, commit and live spiritually, and all are invited to participate.

For more information, contact the Mercy Ministry Center at 773-298-3419 or kleistFREESXU.