Our Footprint

Next Wednesday is Ash Wednesday, which, of course, is the first day of the liturgical season of Lent, a period of 40 days set aside by the Church to provide time for engaging in activities which promote spiritual growth.

Given the approach of Lent, I would like to propose some (perhaps unique) categories to think about in our conscious choices as we begin our Lenten Journey of Growth. My suggestions all fall under the following rubric: 

Be attentive to our footprint!

 Allow me to explain.

Each of us leaves our mark wherever we go. I would like to toss out an idea which uses our physical footprint as a symbol of the effect we have in our world through our choices, our actions and our thoughts:

Leave a smaller carbon footprint.  Perhaps we could consider being attentive to the resources we use, waste and perhaps misuse. 

Leave a kinder virtual footprint.  Perhaps we could consider being attentive to the messages we send using the tool of technology. Maybe we could even consider fasting from the use of technology at certain times of day.

FAMILY TIP SHEET from Common Sense Media: Protecting and Respecting Privacy

Leave a gentler emotional footprint.  Perhaps we consider the emotional landscape of a room because of our presence. Do others feel inspired or empowered or encouraged because of our words or deeds? 

Leave a saintly spiritual footprint Our thoughts and prayers have an effect in the world which is more difficult to see, but just as real. I honestly believe that the peace we experience as we walk around this school is the effect of the spiritual footprint left by our dear Mother Duchesne!

Whatever mark we leave, on the physical world, the virtual world, the emotional world, or the spiritual world is there forever. What we do, the choices we make, the actions we engage in and the very thoughts we think have consequences which reverberate into the universe and have an effect (either positively or negatively) on others.

As we consider our Lenten resolutions, let us consider what might minimize the negative effects of our footprint and enhance the positive effects of our footprint. Let us choose consciously to make a good mark on the world! This Lent, perhaps we could all make the choice to…

Be attentive to our footprint!

United in the One Whose Spiritual Footprint lingers in each of our Hearts,

Maureen Glavin, rscj