I’m always struck by how perfectly the prayer of St. Ephraim the Syrian encapsulates both the spirit of Great Lent and the mission of YES. As we unworthily make our prostrations at the foot of the Lord’s throne, we ask that He replace our slothfulness and despair with attributes such as humility, patience, and love. YES empowers its participants to do the same through building relationships within their communities, investing time into local organizations, and joyfully celebrating the humanity that connects us all.

YES similarly encourages its participants to look beyond the poverty and brokenness afflicting their neighbors, and instead recognize their likeness in Christ. I remain indebted to YES for giving me a lens through which I can better internalize the notion that—in preparation for Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection—we pray for humility, patience, and love, so that we may share our gifts with others, serving the Christ inside us all.

-Peyton Powers on Where Lent and YES Come Together

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