Although Ash Wednesday, the start of Lent, doesn’t arrive until Feb. 10, it’s not too early to begin planning for how you will try to make the most of this annual period of prayer, fasting and almsgiving.

In many parishes the materials for special small group gatherings were selected and ordered months ago.

But there’s still time to organize ad hoc groups or to make preparations to study and grow on your own or with a friend or two during the Lenten season. If that’s your plan, we’ve got a free offer you might not be able to refuse.

At the end of this week we’ll be publishing a free 6-week study guide on Pope Francis’ widely acclaimed apostolic exhortation Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel). Copies will be distributed via email to all who ask for them.

To reserve your copy, request it from

Participants will need copies of the pope’s exhortation to use the study guide. It can be downloaded free from the Vatican website here, or purchased in handy book form from a variety of sources.



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