Today, Sister Theresa Aletheia Noble, FSP is sharing one of her favorite topics: memento mori, a Latin phrase that calls us to “remember death.” While this is a year-round spiritual practice for many Catholics, it’s especially timely during the first week of Lent.
If you went to Ash Wednesday Mass yesterday, you probably heard a priest say, “Remember you are dust and to dust you shall return.” Pretty dark stuff, right?
Well, Sister Theresa Aletheia — or the “death nun,” as some call her — is here to explain how remembering your death is actually a healthy spiritual practice.
A lot of people trace this spiritual practice back to medieval times but Sister Theresa Aletheia explains that it actually has roots in the beginning of salvation history.
The Bible tells the story of God saying to Adam and Eve those words we all hear on Ash Wednesday: “Remember you are dust and to dust you shall return.”
Memento mori can help us get more out of the season of Lent.
There are a few ways to practice memento mori, including keeping a skull on your desk. Sister Theresa Aletheia also wrote a Lenten devotional about incorporating this spiritual practice into your life this season.
Many saints throughout church history have used memento mori to help them focus on holiness.
St. Ignatius said when you have a big decision to make you should imagine yourself on your deathbed.
After all, death can happen at any time — not just later in life. But that shouldn’t make us despair, it should give us hope by helping us focus on living for heaven!
Will you give it a try this Lent? Sr. Theresa Aletheia will keep you in her prayers!
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