Loyola University Chicago

Campus Ministry

Division of Student Development


Lent, Holy Week, and Easter

Lent is a forty day period of time during which Christians devote themselves to prayer, fasting, and works of mercy as a way of
preparing themselves to celebrate Christ's death and resurrection at Easter. Originally a time of preparation for those who would be
baptized on Easter, Lent gradually became a time when those who had left the practice of their faith would return to Christ and the Church.
Today, Lent offers Christians an opportunity to prepare themselves to recommit to their baptismal promises at Easter by returning to
the basic practices of their faith.


All liturgies are at Madonna della Strada Chapel on the Lakeshore Campus.


April 14, Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord

10:30 a.m., 5:00 p.m., and 9:00 p.m.


April 15, Monday of Holy Week

Mass at 12:00 p.m.

Via Crucis: Bilingual Way of the Cross, beginning at the chapel 7:00 p.m.

Eucharistic Adoration and Confessions from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.


April 16, Tuesday of Holy Week

Mass at 12:00 p.m.

Stations of the Cross and Rosary at 9:00 p.m.


April 17, Wednesday of Holy Week

Mass at 12:00 p.m.

Confessions from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Taizé Evening Prayer at 9:30 p.m.


April 18, Holy Thursday

Evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper at 5:00 p.m.

Chapel open for Eucharistic Adoration until midnight.

No other Masses will be celebrated on this day.


April 19, Good Friday

Celebration of the Passion of the Lord at 3:00 p.m.

No other liturgies will be celebrated on this day.


April 20, Holy Saturday

The Great Easter Vigil at 8:00 p.m.


April 21, Easter Sunday

Mass at 10:30 a.m.

No other Masses or Confessions will be celebrated on this day.


April 15 - Via Crucis, 7:00 p.m., Begins at MDS Chapel  

Join us for this outdoor, bilingual Stations of the Cross Service with a special focus on praying for compassionate immigration reform.


April 17 - Reconciliation Service and Confessions, 7:00 to 8:30 p.m., MDS Chapel       

Prepare for Easter by joining others in a brief Reconciliation Service at 7:00 p.m. and then stay for the opportunity to go to Confession. Multiple priests will be available.

Note: All events begin after spring break.


Sundays - Young Adult Mass at WTC, Sunday at 7:00 pm St. James Chapel (in Quigley Cneter on the  corner of Rush and Pearson)

Join other young adults in the celebration of the Eucharist at the Water Tower Campus.


Mondays - Adoration of the Eucharist and Confessions: Mondays, 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. in MDS Chapel

Take time out of your busy schedule to go to confession and pray before Christ in the Most Blessed Sacrament.


Tuesdays  - Mass at WTC, All Saints Chapel (3rd Floor of Terry Student Center), Tuesdays at 12:10 p.m.

Join other in the celebration of the Eucharist at the Water Tower Campus.


Tuesdays and Fridays - St. Thomas of Canterbury Soup Kitchen: Tuesdays and Fridays, 3:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.  Meet in Damen 232             

Volunteer at St. Thomas of Canterbury Soup Kitchen to prepare, serve, and share a meal. Meet in Damen 232 with your U-Pass, appropriate clothing (no shorts), and closed-toe shoes. For more information, click here.


Tuesdays - Stations of the Cross and Rosary: Tuesdays, 9:00 p.m. in MDS Chapel

Retrace Christ’s journey to the cross with scripture and song, and then stay to pray the rosary with the AMDG student group.


Wednesdays - Soup and Solidarity: Wednesdays at 12:30-1:30 p.m. March 13, 20, 27, April 3, 10, 17 in Damen 217

This Lenten season, Campus Ministry will provide a forum for students to learn about solidarity by hearing from Loyola staff and engaging in casual lunchtime conversation with their peers. All students are welcome. For more information, contact Oliver Goodrich, ogoodrich@luc.edu.


Thursdays - Labre Ministry: Thursdays at 6:00 p.m. at All Saints Chapel (3rd Floor of Terry Student Center)

Form relationships with individuals experiencing homelessness in downtown Chicago, providing both food and friendship. Please register through LUCentral.

“Lent is a favorable season for opening the doors to all those in need
and recognizing in them the face of Christ." (Pope Francis)

Holy Hour of Eucharistic Adoration: Wednesdays, April 10 and April 17 at 11:50 a.m. – 12:50 p.m. in Gathering Room, SSOM 250

Come and pray before the Blessed Sacrament.


Lenten Prayer:  April 12 at 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. in Gathering Room, SSOM 250 
Join in a Lenten meditation facilitated by Deacon Chris Murphy, Faculty/Staff Chaplain. RSVP to Deacon Chris Murphy


Stations of the Cross: Monday, April 15 at 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. Meet in Gathering Room, SSOM 250

Pray the Stations as a community during Holy Week. 

Daily Bible Readings

For the scripture readings from the Mass, please click here.


Daily Prayer from "Sacred Space"

This prayer site is a joint apostolate of the Irish Jesuits and Loyola Press. For today's prayer, click here.


Rules for Fasting and Abstinence

Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are obligatory days of fasting and abstinence for Catholics. In addition, Fridays during Lent are obligatory days of abstinence. For members of the Latin Catholic Church, the norms on fasting are obligatory from age 18 until age 59. When fasting, a person is permitted to eat one full meal, as well as two smaller meals that together are not equal to a full meal. The norms concerning abstinence from meat are binding upon members of the Latin Catholic Church from age 14 onwards. Members of the Eastern Catholic Churches are to observe the particular law of their own sui iuris Church (from the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops).


Ideas for Giving Up Something for Lent

We often hear this question around this time of year, and many of us are still pondering what we should give up for Lent. Why do we give up something for Lent, and what's so wrong with meat that we are commanded to abstain from it? The answers are found in the ancient fasting practices of the Church, which have become more lenient through recent generations.

Technically, there is a difference between fasting, which pertains to the amount of food, and abstinence, which pertains to the type of food. Fasting, going without a meal or more, was an ancient practice of the Church, dating back to the time of Christ who said, "When the Bridegroom (Jesus) is taken away, then you shall fast." Early Christians applied this to Good Friday, when Christ died. An ancient Christian catechetical manual called the "Teaching of the Twelve Apostles", which may date to the first century, stipulates that Christians should fast every Friday, since it was the day on which Christ died, and catechumens who were preparing for baptism should fast a few days before they received that sacrament. Ancient Christians fasted on every Friday throughout the year and then as Lent originated as the final period of preparation for catechumens, they would fast throughout the forty days of Lent. These strict rules were gradually adapted, so that today we only fast on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.

Abstinence is not eating a particular type of food -- in this case meat. Why meat? Of course, there is nothing inherently wrong with meat, but abstinence from meat was based on a play on words. "Flesh" (sarx in Biblical Greek) is the word St. Paul often used to describe our sensual nature that is prone to sin, our concupiscence. In Galatians, St. Paul says that the works of the flesh include things like: immorality, impurity, hatred, rivalry, jealousy, acts of selfishness, and drinking bouts. For ancient Christians, abstaining from "flesh" (meat) was symbolic of attempting to abstain from the works of the "flesh". Some theologians also gave another, perhaps more readily understood to modern Christians, reason for abstaining from meat: people and animals were created on the same "day" in the creation account. By not eating meat, we respect the lives of our fellow creatures and return to the diet of our first parents, who according to Genesis, did not eat meat. Abstaining from meat is thus a return to the original harmony in the world and a reminder to curb our own sinful desires. Until several generations ago, all Catholics were to abstain from meat through the forty days of Lent just as they did on every Friday! As these rules changed throughout the years, people began to choose what they would like to abstain from ("give up") during Lent.
So what does this mean for us today? The main value of fasting and abstinence is the meaning and reasons. Lent is not a diet. Giving up something for Lent also must be in conjunction with the two other disciplines of Lent: prayer and alms-giving (literally "works of mercy"). As we fast and abstain on Ash Wednesday, let us remember Christ's death and ask for God's grace so that were may deny the works of "the flesh". Let us live in harmony and respect our fellow creatures as we long to return to paradise, through Christ's death and resurrection. If you haven't chosen something to give up for Lent, here are some suggestions:

•Things that could be dangerous to your physical health: alcohol, junk food, sweets
• Things that take time away from your relationship with God and others: social media, binging on Netflix, gaming
• Things that harm Creation: using disposable items, wasting water or food, littering
• Things that are superfluous, the expense of which could be donated to the poor: going out to eat, "clubbing", going to the movies or concerts

The main thing to remember is that whatever you chose to give up for Lent, it should have a meaning, even if it is just symbolic of remembering Christ's ultimate sacrifice and trying to curb you own desires. When you combine this with prayer and helping the poor, you will have a "good" Lent (John Paul Salay).


Pope Francis' Message for Lent 2019

“For the creation waits with eager longing  for the revealing of the children of God” (Rm 8: 19)

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Each year, through Mother Church, God “gives us this joyful season when we prepare to celebrate the paschal mystery with mind and heart renewed… as we recall the great events that gave us new life in Christ” (Preface of Lent I). We can thus journey from Easter to Easter towards the fulfilment of the salvation we have already received as a result of Christ’s paschal mystery – “for in hope we were saved” (Rom 8:24). This mystery of salvation, already at work in us during our earthly lives, is a dynamic process that also embraces history and all of creation. As Saint Paul says, “the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the children of God” (Rom 8:19). In this perspective, I would like to offer a few reflections to accompany our journey of conversion this coming Lent.

1. The redemption of creation

The celebration of the Paschal Triduum of Christ’s passion, death and resurrection, the culmination of the liturgical year, calls us yearly to undertake a journey of preparation, in the knowledge that our being conformed to Christ (cf. Rom 8:29) is a priceless gift of God’s mercy.

When we live as children of God, redeemed, led by the Holy Spirit (cf. Rom 8:14) and capable of acknowledging and obeying God’s law, beginning with the law written on our hearts and in nature, we also benefit creation by cooperating in its redemption. That is why Saint Paul says that creation eagerly longs for the revelation of the children of God; in other words, that all those who enjoy the grace of Jesus’ paschal mystery may experience its fulfilment in the redemption of the human body itself. When the love of Christ transfigures the lives of the saints in spirit, body and soul, they give praise to God. Through prayer, contemplation and art, they also include other creatures in that praise, as we see admirably expressed in the “Canticle of the Creatures” by Saint Francis of Assisi (cf. Laudato Si’, 87). Yet in this world, the harmony generated by redemption is constantly threatened by the negative power of sin and death.

2. The destructive power of sin

Indeed, when we fail to live as children of God, we often behave in a destructive way towards our neighbours and other creatures – and ourselves as well – since we begin to think more or less consciously that we can use them as we will. Intemperance then takes the upper hand: we start to live a life that exceeds those limits imposed by our human condition and nature itself. We yield to those untrammelled desires that the Book of Wisdom sees as typical of the ungodly, those who act without thought for God or hope for the future (cf. 2:1-11). Unless we tend constantly towards Easter, towards the horizon of the Resurrection, the mentality expressed in the slogans “I want it all and I want it now!” and “Too much is never enough”, gains the upper hand.

The root of all evil, as we know, is sin, which from its first appearance has disrupted our communion with God, with others and with creation itself, to which we are linked in a particular way by our body. This rupture of communion with God likewise undermines our harmonious relationship with the environment in which we are called to live, so that the garden has become a wilderness (cf. Gen 3:17-18). Sin leads man to consider himself the god of creation, to see himself as its absolute master and to use it, not for the purpose willed by the Creator but for his own interests, to the detriment of other creatures.

Once God’s law, the law of love, is forsaken, then the law of the strong over the weak takes over. The sin that lurks in the human heart (cf. Mk 7:20-23) takes the shape of greed and unbridled pursuit of comfort, lack of concern for the good of others and even of oneself. It leads to the exploitation of creation, both persons and the environment, due to that insatiable covetousness which sees every desire as a right and sooner or later destroys all those in its grip.

3. The healing power of repentance and forgiveness

Creation urgently needs the revelation of the children of God, who have been made “a new creation”. For “if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away; behold, the new has come” (2 Cor 5:17). Indeed, by virtue of their being revealed, creation itself can celebrate a Pasch, opening itself to a new heaven and a new earth (cf. Rev 21:1). The path to Easter demands that we renew our faces and hearts as Christians through repentance, conversion and forgiveness, so as to live fully the abundant grace of the paschal mystery.

This “eager longing”, this expectation of all creation, will be fulfilled in the revelation of the children of God, that is, when Christians and all people enter decisively into the “travail” that conversion entails. All creation is called, with us, to go forth “from its bondage to decay and obtain the glorious liberty of the children of God” (Rom 8:21). Lent is a sacramental sign of this conversion. It invites Christians to embody the paschal mystery more deeply and concretely in their personal, family and social lives, above all by fasting, prayer and almsgiving.

Fasting, that is, learning to change our attitude towards others and all of creation, turning away from the temptation to “devour” everything to satisfy our voracity and being ready to suffer for love, which can fill the emptiness of our hearts. Prayer, which teaches us to abandon idolatry and the self-sufficiency of our ego, and to acknowledge our need of the Lord and his mercy. Almsgiving, whereby we escape from the insanity of hoarding everything for ourselves in the illusory belief that we can secure a future that does not belong to us. And thus to rediscover the joy of God’s plan for creation and for each of us, which is to love him, our brothers and sisters, and the entire world, and to find in this love our true happiness.

Dear brothers and sisters, the “lenten” period of forty days spent by the Son of God in the desert of creation had the goal of making it once more that garden of communion with God that it was before original sin (cf. Mk 1:12-13; Is 51:3). May our Lent this year be a journey along that same path, bringing the hope of Christ also to creation, so that it may be “set free from its bondage to decay and obtain the glorious liberty of the children of God” (Rom 8:21). Let us not allow this season of grace to pass in vain! Let us ask God to help us set out on a path of true conversion. Let us leave behind our selfishness and self-absorption, and turn to Jesus’ Pasch. Let us stand beside our brothers and sisters in need, sharing our spiritual and material goods with them. In this way, by concretely welcoming Christ’s victory over sin and death into our lives, we will also radiate its transforming power to all of creation.

From the Vatican, 4 October 2018
Feast of Saint Francis of Assisi