Lent calendar prayer and reflection for 5 April

Nomita stands with her children by their fish pond

Nomita (right) with her children Sonia and Bissajit

“The Lord is close to the broken-hearted; those whose spirit is crushed he will save.” 

Psalm 33:16, 18, 19-21, 23 R v 19

Nomita’s husband was killed in a terrible storm that hit their part of Bangladesh ten years ago, leaving her alone with two small children.  

“It was like I went mad,” she remembers. “For a year after his death, I had no common sense. It was a terrible time. For a year I didn’t eat normally. I didn’t sleep properly. I couldn’t think normally. 

“There were times when I thought I might die too...I have a photo of my husband but when I see it, it brings up all the memories. I can’t look at it.” 

Emotionally wounded, she had to continue providing for her children. 

“After he died, I had nothing,” she explains, “and my relatives had to come and help me out. I wouldn’t have been able to survive without them. I worked in different homes doing jobs cooking and cleaning to get a bit of money to look after my children.” 

Learning to live again

Nomita somehow rallied and has worked hard to bring up her family alone.  

“I thank God for giving me energy and he recovered me. God helped me to care for my children, to look after them properly. I saw my children were not eating properly and God helped me to care for them.” 

Now Nomita feels proud of what she has achieved, despite her bereavement: “I enjoy everything about my work. I go to market to buy rice, salt, vegetables. And sometimes I go to the fields after lunch and do whatever is needed.  

“As I have no husband, everything is done by me. I really enjoy the work. Someone recently told me: ‘You have everything you need right here.’”

Lent prayer

Lord, I pray for all those who are having to cope on their own because of bereavement. Grant them the strength and courage to face the future that is different from everything they had hoped and planned for. May they find the support they need and some comfort in their grief. Amen.

Act

In solidarity with our sisters and brothers living in poverty across the world, please donate to our Lenten Appeal as part of your almsgiving this season.

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