For most Catholic households, another year of the Easter season means another year of Lent. For Catholics, Lent is a time for reflection and giving thanks for what surrounds our everyday lives, and with that, giving those who follow Catholicism the opportunity to become more well-rounded individuals.

I am someone who was raised in the Catholic tradition. During my time as a Catholic, I have come to appreciate my experiences through reflection, and Lent is a time to further my relationship with myself and others.

In Catholic tradition, it is normal that Catholics either give up something that’s important to them or something they like, or do something extra that normally doesn’t fall in their everyday routine. This Lenten season, I decided to give up playing video games for the 40 days of Lent.

Throughout my life, I loved playing video games. Whether it be playing FIFA with my brothers, friends or alone, or competing in intense Mario Kart races on the Wii with my twin sister and family, video games were a time for me to take a step back from the everyday struggles in life and have fun. However, this habit got bad at some points, as I noticed I would always play for longer hours as I got more addicted to a specific game.

With this in mind, I wanted to give up video games this Lenten season because this was something I had never done before. Normally, I would give up something that wasn’t challenging for me as an excuse to continue playing video games. I remember one year for Lent, I gave up eating bagels just to play Backyard Baseball, and I barely ate bagels.

With all of this in mind, in this season of Lent and in recent weeks, it would be ignorant of me to not address the coronavirus outbreak in the United States over the past months. With the world of sports shutting down and the increase in social distancing, this is now a moment for us to test our faith.

So far, I have been doing well with my Lenten promise, as it has been easy for me to be distracted from my Lenten promise with the recent events surrounding the coronavirus. However, even though I haven’t been focusing on my Lenten promise, that does not mean I can forget about it.

The distraction of the coronavirus should and will not affect my Lenten promise of not playing video games. Even though we are strongly suggested to distance ourselves from one another, with most of that time being spent inside my house, this will challenge me to find new passions that, maybe, I never knew I had before. The free time spent could be used to help me learn something new about myself I didn’t know previously, allowing me to become a better person altogether.

The beauty of the Lenten season is anyone can have their own way of giving something up or doing something that doesn’t pertain to the Catholic faith.

For example, you could tell yourself that every morning before you do your normal morning routine, you could just take some time to meditate and reflect on how you are feeling about the day ahead. If you want to do something more direct, you could do something like tell your family members you love them or make breakfast for a family member once a week. The point of the Easter season is to reflect, think and enact on what we have learned from our past experiences and apply them to our future experiences.

For me, Lent is a time I cherish because it allows me to think about what I have in my life and feel grateful for everything that has happened to me up to this point. I encourage you to do the same as you take time to reflect and be with your loved ones during this time.

Vinny Saglimbeni is a sports editor.

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