Bishop of Limerick says don’t give up giving for lent

Bishop of Limerick Brendan Leahy. Photo: Keith Wiseman.

THE BISHOP of Limerick has said that almsgiving this Lent should not be just about financial generosity, but giving more in areas like the time spent with loved ones, welcoming refugees to the area, or simply being better at understanding.

In his Lenten Letter, Bishop Brendan Leahy wished to focus this year on the theme of giving. As the Lenten period ushered in on February 14, he urged the people of Limerick to consider giving, instead of giving up.

“When we think of Lenten giving, we might assume it’s about contributing financially to the poor and good causes, which is noble,” he said. “But almsgiving is about much more than that. It has to do with our day-to-day attitude to life.”

“Lent offers us a time to improve a little more in becoming people who live with an attitude of cheerful giving.”

“While we might not have much finance to share today, there are many more ways of giving,” he continued.

Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter

“For instance, we can lend a listening ear to someone who wants to chat. We can exercise patience in situations that are testing us. We can give generously by doing our work well or carrying out our duties well as a mother or father, son or daughter, an employer, an employee.

“We can share our values by giving witness to them. We can offer a smile to welcome others. We can offer words of consolation or good advice. We can give by trying to understand others better and to forgive others if they have offended us.”

Bishop Leahy added that welcoming refugees, including people of different religious culture, is also a form of Lenten giving to be encouraged.

“Hospitality is a praiseworthy expression of giving, especially when we welcome, protect, promote, and integrate those who are refugees and migrants, or those with religious convictions different to ours.”

Bishop Leahy concluded that “ultimately, prayer for other’s people’s intentions and peace in our world is a wonderful way of giving.”

“Let’s see how this year we can try, with God’s grace, to give more of ourselves in our relationship with God and in our relationships with others. And let’s give thanks for all who have helped us and for those who, in big and small ways, work on our behalf.”