Catholic Exchange

Meditations for Lent

Even three hundred years ago, believers found it difficult to sustain for forty days the proper Lenten spirit. That's why even then, countless Christians turned to the writings of Bishop Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet (1627-1704), whose great piety and simple eloquence won him renown as one of the greatest preachers of his time. From Bishop Bossuet's sermons and spiritual writings, believers drew ever greater Lenten wisdom and strength.

Now translator Christopher Blum has selected from Bishop Bossuet's voluminous works fifty brief but remarkably powerful meditations that complement the daily readings at Mass during the Lenten season, thus offering to us the perfect companion for a thoughtful and fruitful Lent.

If you read and meditate briefly on just one of them each day in Lent, I guarantee that this good French bishop's eloquence will soon have you not merely remembering the events of Christ's journey to His Crucifixion; it will have you spiritually walking with Him on that journey . . . which is precisely what we are called to do in Lent!

With Bossuet, this Lent you will find yourself saying, "O Jesus! I present myself to you to make my journey in your company. O my Savior, receive your traveler! Here I am ready, holding on to nothing. Let me go with You to the Father."

That's the fire that should burn in the heart of all Christians. This Lent, let Bishop Bossuet enkindle it in yours. Among the Meditations:

  • God Alone Suffices
  • Pray to God in Secret
  • The Truth and the Life
  • Tempted in the Desert
  • The Sign of Jonah
  • Love Your Enemies
  • This Is My Beloved Son
  • And You Will Be Forgiven
  • The Wicked Tenants
  • In Spirit and in Truth
  • The Silence of Christ
  • Priest, Prophet, and King
  • Our Life, a Journey to God
  • The Great Commandment
  • I Was Hungry and You Fed Me
  • The Love of God for Repentant Sinners
  • Up to Jerusalem
  • God, the Life of the Soul
  • The Witness of the Baptist
  • The Raising of Lazarus
  • Jesus Is Persecuted
  • The True Messiah
  • The Anointing
  • The Betrayal
  • The Eucharist
  • The Passion
  • The Brevity of Life
  • Washed of Our Sins
  • A Sign of Contradiction
  • No Man Ever Spoke Like This Man
  • The Entry of Our Lord into Jerusalem
  • To Unite Ourselves with Christ

  • "These meditations will help you "enter by the narrow door," just as Jesus urges us."
    Fr. Paul Check
    Director of The Courage Apostolate

    "Bossuet is a hidden treasure of profound spiritual insight, and his meditations will transform your Lenten experience."
    Dan Burke
    Executive Director of The National Catholic Register; and Founder, Avila Institute for Spiritual Formation

    "Classic wisdom in a crisp new translation that will be of great spiritual value to everyone seeking to live the Faith more fully." 
    Robert Royal
    Faith & Reason Institute

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