Lent calls Catholics to prayer, fasting and almsgiving. With the start of Lent March 1, the U.S. Catholic Bishops have issued a calendar that provides several opportunities for prayer and almsgiving within the Church.
The season will begin with a special collection for Aid to the Church in Need in Central and Eastern Europe. It is to be held in parishes on Ash Wednesday, March 1, or on the First Sunday of Lent.
The Collection for Black and Indian Missions will be held March 6. The third collection will be March 26; all proceeds will help fund Catholic Relief Services.
The faithful also urged to join in prayer for the 17th Annual Black Church Week of Prayer for the Healing of AIDS, March 5-11, and to observe the Feast of the Annunciation March 25.