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O Lord our God, you sustained your ancient people in the wilderness with bread from heaven: Feed now your pilgrim flock with the food that endures to everlasting life; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Look  at this image taken in the Judean Desert.  What is your first impression?  Now look more closely.  Notice the barren landscape, the uneven terrain, the dryness. What do you see?

Reflect.  Imagine how such a scene must have appeared to our ancestors in faith, as they wandered in the wilderness.  No matter where they turned, there was no sign of life, no source of food or water.  No landmarks to provide a sense of direction.  We are reminded that deserts can be beautiful, yet dangerous places, where our very lives are at stake.  Recall a time when you felt as though you were wandering in a desert.  How did you find your way?

Act. There are so many ways we can help those who appear to be lost in a desert, hungry, thirsty, frightened.  This is especially true of the many marginalized persons in our own communities.  Today do one small thing to help someone who is lost, tired, hungry, homeless.

Thanks for taking part in New and Contrite Hearts. Your comments are very welcome—let others know what you saw and experienced. Until next time, may you have a most blessed Lent.

Music: “Ambient Sonata”  /Album:  Ambient Sonata  /Artist: Dee Yan-Key

Image:   “Wadi Qelt ”   /Place: The Holy Land  /Photographer: Jon Shematek