Lent is a time of repentance, fasting and preparation for the coming of Easter. It is a time of self-examination, reflection and sacrifice. Lent is also a time to prepare new members to be welcomed into the church through the Sacraments of Initiation.
Catholics are encouraged to use the 40 days of Lent to pray, fast, contemplate, and engage in acts of spiritual self-discipline. This is often manifested in fasting on AshWednesday and Good Friday along with abstaining from eating meat on the Fridays of Lent. Many Catholics perform acts of sacrifice by abstaining from favorite treats or activities or by giving extra time in service to those in need.
Lent ends with the beginning of the Tridduum which celebrates the paschal mystery of Christ's suffering, death and resurrection. Holy Week is the holiest time of the year and a time for us to reflect upon the gift of God's love for us.