Lent calendar prayer and reflection for 3 March

Fairtrade farmers

Thanks to Fairtrade, farmers across the world are getting a fair price for what they produce.

A humbled contrite heart, O God, you will not spurn. 

Psalm 50:3-6, 18-19. R. v. 19

Today’s readings call us to true religion and a genuine conversion of heart. If we have a “humbled, contrite heart,” then we can commit to change our whole selves through prayer and fasting. 

In today’s reading from Isaiah (58:1-9), the faults revealed to the people are not a lack of piety as they are earnestly seeking after God, but their fasting is only scratching the surface of their lives. They are seeking right relationship with God without considering other people and so workers are oppressed and there are disputes.

In our world today the practice of religion is often regarded as part of our private lives, something to be kept to ourselves, which should not affect our dealings with others.  However, our fasting and our religious observances should permeate our whole lives. This will mean addressing how the way we live affects all people.

Do we observe the Lenten fast and then do business in the same way as the rest of society? Rather we should do what we can to address injustice in the world. For example, we can choose to promote fair trade, a living wage for all, women’s empowerment or campaign against human trafficking. We can help people to transform their lives by supporting CAFOD, food banks and welcoming refugees. If we do what we can, then the light of Jesus Christ will shine through us to the world.

Pray

Spirit of God, fill us with your light, so that our Lenten fast may so reconfigure our lives that we are in right relationship with both God and neighbour. Amen.

Act 

It’s Fairtrade Fortnight! Enjoy your favourite cup of Fairtrade tea and email your MP to ask them to put the world's poorest people at the heart of global trade.

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