I like to think of Lent as a silent retreat that we all make together. We double-down our efforts to focus on God’s mercy and love for us. We celebrate the Eucharist, paying special attention to Christ’s passion, death and resurrection. We generally “give up” something, or commit to doing something differently, as our own sacrifice.

Whom do we tell what we’re giving up or what we’re doing? Why? Is God’s knowledge of our sacrifice not enough? This Lent, let’s commit to prayer, almsgiving and fasting in secret—in silence. And when we struggle, let’s turn to him for help. Make this retreat into your “inner room,” where God and God alone knows you best.

Connor Walters is a communications coordinator at Saint Ignatius High School in Cleveland. He also coaches rowing and co-moderates the school’s Saint Benedict Joseph Labre Ministry to the Homeless.