It’s hard to believe our Lent Madness journey is nearing its inevitable end. We kicked things off over five weeks ago on “Ash Thursday” with 32 saintly souls (which somehow seems a lot longer than that this year). With your help, the field has now been whittled down to just two: Harriet Tubman and Joseph. Who will be awarded the coveted 2020 Golden Halo? That, friends, is up to you.
Regardless of the ultimate outcome, we’ve met some truly remarkable holy people along the way. Perhaps you learned about some folks you’d never heard of or maybe you renewed acquaintances with saints who have long offered inspiration. Of course the entire notion of placing saints in a bracket is absurd — each “contestant” has already earned a crown of righteousness in addition to a “golden halo.” But at the heart of Lent Madness is the abiding conviction that encountering those who have come before us in the faith enriches and enlivens our own walk with the risen Christ.
In the process of this whimsical Lenten devotion we’ve all made some new online friends, encountered a community of believers who take their faith but not themselves too seriously, learned some things, were inspired by saintly witnesses, and hopefully had some fun along the way.
Of course we literally couldn’t have done this without our amazing Celebrity Bloggers to whom we offer sincere gratitude: Amber Belldene, Laurie Brock, Megan Castellan, Anna Fitch Courie, David Creech, Miguel Escobar, Neva Rae Fox, David Hansen, Carol Howard Merritt, Emily McFarlan Miller, Sandra Montes, and David Sibley. Thanks to Bracket Czar Adam Thomas for his stellar behind-the-scenes work in keeping the bracket updated daily. You all rock!
A special shout-out to Sister Diana Doncaster, of the Society of the Transfiguration, who kept us humming our favorite hymns throughout the season with her brilliant daily musical offerings based on the saintly pairings.
Thank you to everyone at Forward Movement for putting up with our shenanigans and producing a terrific Saintly Scorecard this year.
Finally, thanks to all of you who participated by voting, commenting, drinking coffee out of Lent Madness mugs, filling in brackets, talking about saints with friends, liking us on Facebook or following us on Twitter, and allowing us to play a small role in your Lenten journey. We’ve loved having each one of you along for the “madness” and on behalf of the Supreme Executive Committee we wish you a blessed Holy Week and a joyous Easter.
Before we invite you to cast this final vote, we should note that Sandra Montes has ably shepherded Harriet Tubman through the bracket, while Neva Rae Fox has done the same for Joseph. We’ve asked them for a single image and one quote either by or about their saint. We’ve already heard a lot about Harriet and Joseph — click the Bracket tab and scroll down to view their previous match-ups if you want to refresh your memory. And then, it’s time to make your choice.
The polls will be open for 24 hours and the winner will be announced at 8:00 am Eastern time on Maundy Thursday. Now go cast your vote — the 2020 Lent Madness Golden Halo hangs in the balance!
“God’s time [Emancipation] is always near. He set the North Star in the heavens; He gave me the strength in my limbs; He meant I should be free.”
-- Harriet Tubman
Go, then to Joseph, and do all that he shall say to you;
Go to Joseph, and obey him as Jesus and Mary obeyed him;
Go to Joseph, and speak to him as they spoke to him;
Go to Joseph, and consult him as they consulted him;
Go to Joseph, and honour him as they honoured him;
Go to Joseph, and be grateful to him as they were grateful to him;
Go to Joseph, and love him, as they love him still.
-- St. Alphonsus Liguori
Harriet Tubman vs. Joseph
Total Voters: 7,934