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The 2019 Handy Dandy List of Lenten Resources

The 2019 Handy Dandy List to Lenten Resources

Can you believe Lent is almost here? What better way to enter into this penitential season than to comb through our newest list of Lenten resources – along with taking a peek at our previous lists dating back to 2013? I don’t know if you’ll find a more thorough set of lists to prepare you to walk with Christ this Lent. At the end of the post you’ll find links to our previous years’ posts. So, let’s get to it, shall we? 



A 2019 complete Liturgical Catholic planner

PDF downloadable and printable from your home – print only what you need

2019 Lenten Tracker // FREE

Lenten Tracker 2019


So simple – download, print, and use to track your Lenten sacrifices with this FREE printable

courtesy of Catholic Sistas foundress Martina Kreitzer


Father Mike

Where is Lent in the Bible? 

Why Fast on Ash Wednesday?


Praying through Holy Week



this is a subscription site – ask your parish for their code to access it for free

Stations of the Cross


What’s the Deal with Ashes on Ash Wednesday?

My Beloved Son – Meditations for Lent

by Bishop Barron

The Passion of Christ: In Light of the Holy Shroud of Turin

by Fr. Francis Peffley

(fun fact – Father Peffley baptized our oldest son and many Kreitzer grandchildren) 🙂 

The Fourth Cup

by Dr. Scott Hahn



from Catholic Blogger

12 Apostles 

by Sara J Creations

Lent in Our Catholic Home 

by Elizabeth Clare

An Illustrated Lent

 by Illustrated Children’s Ministry

Saints for Boys & Girls

by Tan Books

57 Lenten Crafts

by Felt Magnet Crafts

Lenten Activities for Children

by Laci of Catholic Icing

Stations of the Cross for Children

by Julianne M. Will


// PRAYER //

A Year with the Eucharist: Daily Meditations on the Blessed Sacrament

by Paul Jerome Keller, OP

Magnificat Lenten Companion

by Ignatius Press

Parenting with the Beatitudes: Eight Holy Habits for Daily Living

by Jeannie and Ben Ewing

Mass and Adoration Companion

by Vinny Flynn and Erin Flynn

A Year with Mary: Daily Meditations on the Mother of God

by Paul Thigpen, Ph.D.

Manual for Eucharistic Adoration

by Poor Clares of Perpetual Adoration, St. Joseph

Cultivating Virtue: Self Mastery with the Saints

by Tan Books

Lent and Holy Week with Mary

by Dr. Mary Amore


The 2019 Handy Dandy List of Lenten Resources1

Lenten Journal – The Paschal Mystery of Christ

by the Dominican Sisters of Mary

The 2019 Handy Dandy List of Lenten Resources1

To Hear His Voice: A Mass Journal for Children

by  Ginny Kochis

The 2019 Handy Dandy Guide to Lenten Resources

Stay Connected: A Gift of Invitation

by Allison Gingras


Manual for Spiritual Warfare

by Paul Thigpen, Ph.D.

Begone Satan: A Soul-Stirring Account of Diabolical Possession in Iowa

by Reverend Father Carl Vogl

An Exorcist Tells His Story

by Father Gabriele Amorth

An Exorcist Explains the Demonic

by Father Gabriele Amorth

An Exorcist Explains How to Heal the Possessed

by Father Paolo Carlin

Saints who Battled Satan

by Paul Thigpen, Ph.D.

Hostage to the Devil: The Possession and Exorcism of Five Contemporary Americans

by Malachi Martin

The Spiritual Combat: and a Treatise on Peace of Soul

by Lorenzo Scupoli

Deliverance Prayers: For Use by the Laity

by Father Chad A. Ripperger, Ph.D.

// STUDY //

Forgiven: The Transforming Power of Confession


Lectio: Unveiling Scripture and Tradition


Eucharistic Miracles: And Eucharistic Phenomenon in the Lives of the Saints

by Joan Carroll Cruz

The Discernment of Spirits: An Ignatian Guide for Everyday Living

by Timothy Gallagher

Pray More Retreat

by John-Paul and Annie of Pray More Novenas


// FUNNY //

14 Memes about Lent Catholics Understand


Beloved: Finding Happiness in Marriage

Marriage 911

by Greg and Julie Alexander




Dovetail Ink

by Monica Welch

Luminous Moments by A

by Austyn

BC Inspirations

by Becky Cook


Yes, your church needs holy water during Lent – ESPECIALLY during Lent

More on Sacramentals

Your Guide to a Catholic Lent: Everything you need for a more spiritual Lent

from Simply Catholic


No meat can be eaten on Ash Wednesday and all of the Fridays during Lent. This applies Catholics 14 and older. 


Only one full regular sized meal is permitted on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday for Catholics between 18 and 59. Two smaller meals are permitted, but the small meals should not equal a second full meal. Drinking coffee, tea, and water between meals is allowed. Snacks between meals are not allowed. Exemptions are made, of course, for nursing mothers, the ill, and the elderly for whom fasting would severely compromise their health.


You should strive to go to confession once a month (more frequently also encouraged), but especially during Lent.

Looking for an in-depth Examination of Conscience?

Click here to download and print up a copy to use.

You can also check out the Handy Little Guide to Confession

by Ink Slinger and Catholic author Michelle Schroeder


The original list from 2013, with updates in 2014

The {Second} Handy Dandy List of 2015

The updated 2016 list of Lenten resources

2018 Handy Dandy List of Lenten Sacrifices

Lenten Archives

Season.Lent board on Pinterest

Hopefully, this list inspires you to try something new with your family or faith group, or possibly resurrect an old practice. And I hope everyone has a spiritually fulfilling Lent.

Finally, don’t forget our Annual 2019 Lenten Photo Challenge!

Ink Slingers Lent Motherhood Sarah

Uniting to Christ’s Life-Giving Suffering

Pregnancy can be rough. A mother sacrifices her own body – taking on sickness, pain, and physical marking that may never go away – to bring a new child into this world. Or maybe even, straight into the next world. Even the mother who never holds her child willingly sacrifices her body for that new, sweet soul.

Being in the third trimester of pregnancy, while walking the path of Lent, gives you a unique and clear viewpoint. The forty days of Lent contrast pretty well with those forty weeks gestating a new little life. Both are long, rocky days of self-sacrifice, all in the name of sanctification and everlasting life.

No matter how often we may complain (ahem, if you’re like me, it may be a lot), there is an underlying joy with which we pick up this particular cross. Bringing forth this new life is worth every moment of nausea, every long night of heartburn and insomnia, every sore and aching back. New life – the much longed for, the shocking surprise, or the quickly fleeting – every single one is worth each moment of sacrifice.

The pains of pregnancy and labor are a result of the fall. God’s perfect original plan did not include all of this suffering. In the same way, His original plan did not include sending His Son to suffer and die. Temptation and human weakness altered His perfect plan, but He reached down with the gift of meritorious suffering to give us a second chance. When we suffer and choose to unite ourselves to Christ’s suffering, we bring merit and worth to the pain.

And in Lent, in a very acute way, the pregnant mother can unite herself to the passion and suffering of Christ. He willingly, perhaps even with quiet joy, suffered that we might live. He endured physical pain and scars, He carried His cross along that long and rocky road. He fell and picked Himself back up. He did all this not for Himself, but for us. For you.

Christ’s Passion culminated in an excruciatingly painful, humiliating death. After being whipped and mocked, and hauling that heavy cross up the hill, they hung him there in the hot sun in front of jeering crowds. Just like the long road of pregnancy is hard and exhausting, the mother is then asked to endure labor as the grand climax of creating new life.

How many of us have given birth and quietly thought “this isn’t my most graceful moment!” It hurts. We throw all pride to the wind. We grip the moment, cry out to be relieved of the pain, and suffer through. And every mother would stand up and say that she’d do it all again. Every moment, every tear shed, every drop of blood spilled. Each and every child is worth the sacrifice his mother endures to co-create with spouse and God a new and unique soul.

I’m sure that if we could ask Jesus, He’d say the same thing. He willingly suffered for our souls and our chance to attain the ultimate goal of Heaven. He shed tears and spilled blood for your soul and He’d do it again if that were required.

No one likes pain and suffering. No sane person sets out in search of it. But as Christians, we have been given a gift of understanding the merits of suffering. Christ’s suffering attained the chance of eternal life for each us, just as a mother’s suffering brings forth a new life. Our individual suffering – be it great or seemingly small – is meritorious in its own way. Christ calls us all to suffer alongside Him and to one day rejoice alongside Him in Heaven.


Ink Slingers Lent Liturgical Year Mary P.

Done is Better than Perfect

My nine year old daughter spent the last week asking me what I thought she should give up for Lent. No doubt she was trying to come up with the absolute perfect Lenten sacrifice. She is just like her mother. As a melancholic perfectionist, I’m always on the quest for the perfect, or ideal. The ideal homeschool curriculum, the ideal chore routine, the ideal discipline technique, and yes, the ideal sacrifice for Lent. (And in my mind, the “ideal” sacrifice is one that is very arduous and unpleasant, and is reminiscent of the days when Catholics gave up all animal products for the entirety of Lent).

When I’m making plans, nothing can ever just be “good enough.” It has to be perfect. Because if I can just figure out what the perfect thing is, then my life will be perfect!

But the problem with the quest for “the perfect” is that it’s usually unrealistic. What ends up happening is that that perfect thing I spent so much time trying to identify does not work out perfectly in my life. The perfect homeschool curriculum that I spent hours researching? It doesn’t actually fit my teaching style or the unique circumstances of my life. That perfect discipline technique? My kids don’t respond well to it. That perfect Lenten sacrifice? It usually results in me biting off more than I can chew (which is ironic for a season of fasting). 

Then, none of it gets done, because “perfect” is too hard and too overwhelming. Instead, I default to nothing. If the science curriculum [on which I spent a ton of money] proves to be too much, there goes science altogether. If the Lenten sacrifice I chose is way too hard, I inevitably just stop trying. And then I’m angry at myself because I’ve failed. Wouldn’t it have been better if I had made more realistic choices and set more realistic goals in in the first place? Wouldn’t success have become more likely?

It turns out that most of the time, “perfect” in the abstract is not the same as “perfect for me.”

So, I’ve started reminding myself that “Done is better than perfect.” That’s my short [and, admittedly, grammatically-questionable] way of saying that something that seems ‘just’ good, but gets accomplished, is better than something that seems perfect, but doesn’t get accomplished. It’s a companion to the saying, “Don’t make the perfect the enemy of the good.”

A good curriculum that I realistically can implement in our homeschooling is better than the “ideal” curriculum that I can’t implement. A good Lenten sacrifice that I can stick to is better than an “ideal” sacrifice that I give up on within the first week or two.

This doesn’t mean I think that we should give a half-hearted effort at things. No, the Lord wants our best!

He wants our best. Not the best anyone could ever offer.

It takes humility and honesty with ourselves to see the difference between those two.

If you find that you’ve bitten off more than you can chew this Lent, be gentle with yourself, and choose something more realistic. In the end, the perfect Lenten sacrifice and the perfect curriculum, and the perfect fill-in-the-blank are the ones that we get done – faithfully, and with love.

7 Quick Takes Christi Domestic Church Novenas Prayer Resources Spiritual Growth

Seven Quick Takes; Lent – take two!

take-2How is your Lent going? Mine, as usual, is … well – its LENT! So, of course, many of my good intentions have been thrown into disarray with all kinds of emergencies, trips to the ER and all that lovely stuff that comes with parenting which, during Lent, seems to hit harder, and with more fury, than it does in the “ordinary” season.  As I threatened promised you last month; this month’s seven quick takes will be a quick set of suggestions of how we can try to get our Lenten sacrifices and prayer time back on track.

Quick take one: I signed up some time ago for a lovely little service sponsored by the Catholic Company. It’s called Catholic Company Morning Offering and  it is delivered to your door daily via email! It’s filled with many nuggets of spiritual inspiration. A quote for the day, usually from a saint, a verse from the bible, the morning offering as well as links to great resources. While there are links to books the Catholic Company is selling, you have the option to follow the link, or not, and their appearance does not detract in any way from the uplifting thoughts enclosed in the email. This Morning Offering is a lovely way to start your day and, if you are finding it hard to start your day with a few moments focused on your relationship with God, this makes it very, very easy to begin a new habit that will continue well after Lent ends. Click here if you are interested in signing up and getting your day started off on the right foot during the rest of Lent and hopefully beyond.

Quick take two: Make use of the Laudette app on your phone or tablet. I honestly have not explored whether it would work on my laptop but one of my adult children, myself and my husband have made great use of it on our phones and tablets. Click here to learn more about it and how to download it, if it’s something you would like to use.

Quick take three: Perhaps you are having the Lent of all Lents! Husband down with the flu, a kid in the pediatric ward and your are strharried mumuggling just to get regular meals on the table and balance the needs of those still healthy with the needs of the ones who are sick. I actually know quite a few families in just that predicament this Lent. If this is you and you have somehow managed to find a moment to read something besides to do lists – you are most likely asking how the heck does she think I can possibly read something every day? If that’s the case and you are just looking for a weekly spiritual uplift – check out the Holy Heroes  weekly reflection on the coming Sunday’s Gospel. Here is this week’s reflection to give you an idea of what it offers. (I swear – I did NOT know she would be talking about starting over with your Lenten resolutions! You would think we were related or something!)

Since I’m talking about the Sunday gospels in this quick take I will take the opportunity to share a link that will allow you to follow the readings according to the calendar followed by the Traditional Latin Mass. Unlike the Novus Order, the Latin Mass calendar only has one cycle of readings, not three.

For other Catholics not of the Roman Rite, this link will lead you to a site with the readings according to the calendar of different Rites.

Quick take four: Another form of prayer that you can engage in for the rest of Lent would be to find a novena to pray over the last weeks. sends out reminders to those who sign up to pray the current novena that this group is praying.

Obviously there is time for more than one novena if you start now which is what, in my opinion, makes Pray More Novenas so appealing. However, if you just want to find your own novena  there are many resources out there, such as EWTNCatholic Doors, or the Fish Eaters.

Quick take five: Another way to revamp your efforts to be closer to Jesus during Lent is to fill in the empty spaces of the day with Catholic radio instead of the regular radio you listen to. iCatholic radio is one good option for use on your cell phone whether it’s an iPhone or uses the Android platform. Another option is to find some good pod casts to listen to. Again EWTN  is a great place to start digging through to find some good things to listen to. You can even find videos to watch as a family there.  Audio Sancto is a great place to find podcasts and, in fact, they currently have Lenten missions available to listen to. What a great way to use that time spent in the car racing around doing errands and picking up kids from school or sports events.

Quick take six: As a family perhaps you can replace the regular evening chaos or the TV zone out of the world hour (or two ) with some family reading time. Maybe chose one of the many books about saints to read as a family. If you are more heavy on the youngins side of the equator chose something from a set of books such as this set offered through Seton.

But if you have reached that stage of life where the youngest at home is an adolescent or older chose something a little heavier such as any of Louis De Wohl books. We have read The Spear, as well as his book on Thomas Aquinas  – The Quiet Light along with The Joyful Beggar a book about St. Francis of Assisi.

If, like me, you still have a large variety of ages and just can’t read two different books aloud in the evening ask one of the older children to read to the younger ones while you complete some evening chores and then once the little ones are (hopefully) settled in bed read a chapter or two of the older book with your teens. And, yes, most likely the book will out last Lent but then the idea of our Lenten penances and changes are made in hope that we will continue with them long after Lent is over.

Quick take seven: Last, but not least, we have a handy dandy list put together by our own ink slinger Kerri. Check it out and hopefully find something that will make the rest of Lent a bit more meaningful and not leave you feeling that you have somehow failed in your effort to come closer to Christ during these forty days of fasting, penance and prayer. Click here to check it out. My favorite from this extensive list of ideas is the added activity of making a list of forty people who have touched your lives in some way and then, throughout Lent, taking the time to wriletterste a letter or to send a card to them. For those of us with small children I think it would be a lovely idea to have the children draw or color pictures for individuals on the list. Imagine the joy of opening the mail and seeing this labor of love.

It’s not too late to reboot your Lenten efforts (or begin for that matter) as we still have close to four weeks of Lent left! Look at it this way; today is the first day of the rest of Lent!

Thank you again to “This ain’t the Lyseum” for hosting the Quick Take Seven and if you haven’t checked out the blog now hosting this Friday event, hurry on over and introduce yourself. But, before you go – take a moment and share in the comments what is your challenge this Lent and/or any ideas you have about how to grow closer to Christ during the next four weeks.


Charla Fasting Ink Slingers Lent Offering your suffering Prayer Spiritual Growth

I give up!

lent-newThis Lent has been a particularly fruitful time for me. I cannot remember another one in recent memory when I have remained so focused on what the season is all about. Throughout the years, I have noticed the different personas of the Lenten figure. I have been each one of these at some point in my life. Here are a few of them:

#1 There is always an exception (or two or three) to the rule. Sundays don’t count, right? What about feast days? Sure St. Patrick’s Day is exempt. It is not that big of a deal to overlook my Lenten sacrifices– oh, just this once.

#2 I can change my mind. I gave up sweets for Lent, but a week into it, I think giving up sodas would be better. Two weeks later, you know, sodas aren’t really that big of a deal for me, so I will give up pizza instead.

#3 I will do it all. I am going to give up fast food and sweets and coffee (maybe not coffee) and wine (maybe not that either) and meat and… I am also going to pray the Rosary every day and go to Daily Mass and go feed the homeless and donate my lunch money and fast. I am SuperSacrificer; I will do everything for Lent, but none of it will be done fully.

#4 Sacrifice is not necessary; I am going to DO something good instead. God certainly cares more about my being a good person and doing good works, so giving up stuff is not the way to go.

#5 Make sure everyone knows what I am giving up. So, if I let everyone know what I am sacrificing for Lent, do I appear to be more pious? Fasting is admirable; I should let people know that I can’t eat or drink or have sweets. Do I sacrifice out of my own pride for show or do I mean to offer it up to the Lord?

spiritI have made these mistakes and I have learned several lessons from them. I realize that sacrifice is not about me. Once I take myself out of the purpose of the sacrifice, paradoxically, I receive so many more blessings. Not eating sweets is good for my body, but it is better for my soul when removal of the weakness is offered up in conjunction with Christ’s suffering or for a special intention.

Prayer is key to surviving Lenten sacrifices. In moments of weakness when offering up the sacrifice is just not working, prayer helps resist the temptation in a powerful way. When temptation arises (I really want to stop at McDonald’s) a prayer for strength helps. Looking to God for His blessings and help in times of wanting a cheeseburger is practice for the big temptations in life. We will become so accustomed to praying when we fear falling, it will become second nature.

Overzealousness is also problematic. We cannot do it all. Cutting out everything we find temptation in only sets us up for failure, and then we resign ourselves to weakness. If we wallow in this lack of strength, we our spinning our proverbial wheels and we go nowhere spiritually.

Again, sacrifice is not about us; it is, instead, a realization of a weakness, and then it becomes a concerted effort to overcome that shortcoming as rehearsal for the big and serious temptations of sin. If we give ourselves an out or an exception and therefore permission to deviate from the rule we set for ourselves, we have created subjectivity and will learn to avoid the big objective Truth. lentwordle
Mahatma Ghandi said: “The sacrifice which causes sorrow to the doer of the sacrifice is no sacrifice. Real sacrifice lightens the mind of the doer and gives him a sense of peace and joy.” Isn’t this what we all strive for in our Lenten journey—that peace and joy only a close relationship with God an bring?