40 Meetings in 40 Days Lenten Challenge
This Lent, detach from addiction and attach to God’s freedom by completing the 40 Meetings in 40 Days Lenten Challenge. “Be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and put on the new self, created in God’s way in righteousness and holiness of truth” (Ephesians 4:23-24).
The 40 Meetings in 40 Days Lenten Challenge is an invitation to grow closer to Jesus Christ and renew your commitment to recovery this Lent. Throughout the season of Lent, which begins with Ash Wednesday on February 22, commit to attending at least one recovery meeting a day for 40 days (Sundays excluded, though still include Mass and the opportunity for extra credit if you do attend a meeting). The meetings you attend can be virtual or in-person Catholic in Recovery meetings or those of other 12-step recovery groups. As you journey throughout Lent, you will receive an email each morning that includes the following:
A REFLECTION BASED ON THE DAY'S MASS READINGS
Each reflection offers a meditation from a Catholic in Recovery member on the day’s Mass readings as well as questions to prompt deeper engagement—all through a recovery perspective.
A COMMITMENT TO ACTION TO FORM NEW POSITIVE HABITS AND ROUTINE
A daily commitment to action to deepen your recovery and faith. Each week we will suggest a new daily commitment to stack on your current commitments to help you build long-lasting healthy habits.
A LIST OF VIRTUAL CIR MEETINGS AVAILABLE THAT DAY
A comprehensive list (with links) to every Catholic in Recovery meeting offered virtually that day so that you can find and attend a meeting that fits your schedule. While we encourage you to attend a Catholic in Recovery meeting, any recovery-based meeting will count for the challenge.
Once registered, you will receive an email confirmation with suggestions on how to make the most of the 40 Meetings in 40 Days Lenten Challenge as well as additional details about the challenge.
BY COMPLETING THE CHALLENGE…
…you will be eligible to win a prize package that includes Catholic in Recovery merchandise, The Catholic in Recovery Workbook, and free admission to a Catholic in Recovery retreat (over $300 value). Details will be provided near the end of the challenge.
Register for the 40 Meetings in 40 Days Lenten Challenge Today!
You are qualified to participate if any one of the following applies to you:
• You are active in recovery and want to deepen your relationship with Christ and the Church, seeking to renew your thoughts and attitudes.
• You have been in and out of recovery and want to finally take it seriously and make an honest commitment with the help of others.
• You have been struggling with an addiction, compulsion, or unhealthy attachment and you’re ready to quit and find a sufficient healthy alternative.
• You have a family member who struggles with an addiction or is in recovery from an addiction and you want to learn what Christ-centered recovery is all about.
• You have a family member with an addiction, are in a recovery fellowship, and want to renew your recovery foundation and relationship with Christ this Lent.
• You are unsure whether you would consider yourself an addict, but you want to stop an unhealthy habit with the help of God and explore a sober lifestyle.
I reach for the spiritual tool kit that is a 12-step program. And when this spiritual tool kit is supplemented with the Church’s sacraments, it is even more powerful. With this spiritual tool kit, I can survive my emotions without turning to alcohol or unhealthy attachments. I have replaced old thinking habits with healthier ones that serve me, my family, and others much better.
12-step programs offer us a way of living that enables us to handle life on life’s terms. I invite you to experience this freedom in your own life by reaching for this spiritual tool kit—the Twelve Steps—and committing to a recovery meeting. And once there, as we say in recovery, “Don’t leave before the miracle happens!”
— Jana I.
Working the Twelve Steps is a path to and a revelation of a God who loves us relentlessly, unceasingly, and beyond our wildest imagination. He is the Suffering Servant who loves us precisely because we are weak and fallen. He intentionally suffered and died for our sins, our addictions, because He eternally yearns to save us and transform us and receive our love in communion with Him.
I have learned in the work of my own personal recovery, especially in the fellowship of Catholic in Recovery, that I am a beloved child of God and that Christ, my friend, was always there with me. Even when I felt most isolated and alone, He was always calling me to recovery, calling me to Him. I have learned that any move or desire within my heart for health and recovery is ALWAYS Him coming to me in love and mercy. So rejoice and take hope! Are you ready to listen? Are you ready to trust?
“We have become partners of Christ if only we hold the beginning of the reality firm until the end, for it is said: ‘Oh, that today you would hear his voice: Harden not your hearts as at the rebellion’” (Hebrews 3:14-15).
— Pete S.
I came into a 12-step program over 22 years ago through Al-Anon. I came because I tried everything else unsuccessfully and I was terrified I was going to lose a second child.
That turned out to be a life-altering decision.
I began a wonderful spiritual journey through the steps, each one leading me closer to my higher power—God. I never stopped going to church but I realized I had been going through the motions before and my faith was renewed by recovery. Looking back, I realize that all the people who suggested I needed Al-Anon were sent by God. God brought me to Al-Anon, and Al-Anon brought me to God.
Lent is a season in the Church’s calendar when we are called to reinvigorate the spiritual practices at the foundation of our faith. We take on a spirit of renewal as we walk alongside those who are preparing to enter the Catholic Church, much like how we accompany newcomers to recovery by remembering and sharing about the early days of our recovery.
BENEFITS OF PARTICIPATING
• Initiate or invigorate your sobriety/abstinence
• Gain freedom from unhealthy attachments (technology, codependency, anxiety, control, etc.)
• Encounter spiritual renewal
• Increase gratitude
• Replace old negative beliefs with a mindset of hope and optimism
• Strengthen your capacity to handle life on life’s terms
• Discover fellowship with other Catholics in Recovery members
• Receive daily encouragement to help you achieve your Lenten goals
• Develop spiritual tools to overcome compulsive behaviors and attitudes
• Form new positive habits and routines that will last
• Connect with the Church’s liturgy and mission this Lent
• Deepen your reliance on and love for Jesus, Mary, and the Saints