Renewing Our Covenant with God this Lent
by Fr. Chase Hilgenbrinck
“After John had been arrested, Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God: “This is the time of fulfillment. The kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.” – Mark 1:14
Mass Readings for this Sunday: http://www.usccb.org/bible/readings/021818.cfm
- During a preseason, much like Lent, we make changes so that we can work on becoming a better version of ourselves. This preseason, this Lent, how can you stay in the moment and stay focused on doing the work of the preseason without wanting it to be over already?
- God is always looking for the righteous — people who trust in Him, who obey His words, and who truly love Him and want to live in relationship with Him. How can you work on these virtues and habits this Lent?
- God also looks for humble people. What ways can you humble yourself in the next few weeks? Consider praying the Litany of Humility throughout Lent.
- God wants to make our lives new again and to renew the covenant with us. What can you do this Lent to work on your relationship with Him?
- God constantly offers Himself to us in the Holy Eucharist. Once we receive Him, we get the chance to share His love with the world. How do you do this?
- In the desert, Jesus suffered physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. In what ways are you suffering this Lent? How can you meditate on Jesus’ suffering during this season and unite yours to His? How can you take comfort in knowing our savior also suffered in these similar ways.
- “Lord, I trust you with my life. I renew that covenant that I already have with you through my baptism…”
Fr. Chase Hilgenbrinck is originally from the Bloomington-Normal area where he grew up serving as an altar boy at Holy Trinity in Bloomington, IL. He was also a very gifted athlete as well. Fr. Chase made the United States Under 17 National Team in high school and was named a high school All-American before moving on to play at Clemson University. While at Clemson, he was a four-year starter helping the tigers to the 2001 ACC championship and four NCCAA tournament berths including two elite eight appearances.
After Graduating in 2004 with a bachelor’s degree in Spanish and international trade, He signed with the Chilean first team division soccer league. On a second division club in 2006, he helped the team achieve promotion to Chile’s top flight while winning the league title. Father played the 2007 season in the first division while completing his fourth and final year in the Chilean league. In two of those years he was selected the league’s most valuable player at the left full-back position. He also spent time with the Colorado Rapids and played for the New England Revolution in the United States Major League Soccer.
He ultimately left it all to enter the seminary to become a Catholic priest and was ordained for Diocese of Peoria by Bishop Daniel R. Jenky on May 24th 2014. After ordination Father served as the Parochial Vicar in Moline and Silvis, Illinois as well as a chaplain at Alleman High School in Rock Island. In 2016 Father Chase became the Assistant Chaplain at the St. John Catholic Newman Center at the University of Illinois in Champaign, the nation’s largest Newman Center. Father now mentors the Newman Hall resident advisor team and serves as the spiritual leader for the Koinionia and freshman retreat programs. He also helps to lead and mentor the student athletes participating in the Catholic Illini Athletic Intramural teams.
While his life has been filled with many incredible experiences as a professional athlete there has been nothing in his life that has been as rewarding as serving our Lord and His people as a Roman Catholic Priest.