Every year for Lent, people choose something to give up, or choose something that they won’t do. And when they give the chosen thing up, they talk about it and show everyone. 

But I think Lent should not be about giving something up. I think Lent should be about doing more. Once a week, you can go to a food pantry, or help an elderly neighbor, or help out more at school. But you don’t have to talk about it and let everyone know. 

There is a saying in Scripture, “And when you fast, do not look gloomy like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces that their fasting may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, that your fasting may not be seen by others but by your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” (Matthew 6:16-18) 

But you shouldn’t do something good and not tell anyone just so that God sees it. You should do it because you want to do it, and if you don’t, you should think of the people that you are helping, the people’s lives that you are improving, even if they don’t realize that you are the one that helped them. The world would be a better place if we did good deeds and did not care if we got the credit. We should do this all year long, but especially during Lent. 

There were many times when Jesus did kind acts and He didn’t take the credit. Even when He was being crucified, instead of mentioning all the kind things He had done to the people who had now turned on Him, He didn’t complain. In fact, He forgave them for the horrible things they had done and He accepted His fate.  

Lent is a time of sacrifice and remembrance, but it should also being a time of doing. And it doesn’t have to be big deeds. If we were just nicer to others at school, at work, and at home, we would all be happier. Many people try to act cool and show off by doing big things that everyone can see. It is a good thing that they are spreading awareness to causes and putting themselves in the spotlight, but getting attention is not what Lent is all about.

If just a few people can be kinder and do more during Lent, even if they are not seen doing it, that will make all the difference. 

Tyler Castler is a 10th-grade student at Bishop Maginn High School.