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Ash Wednesday

Today is Ash Wednesday which begins the season of Lent with a call to penitence. It is a time for silence and reflection and a time to journey once more with the cross of Christ before us. There is a tradition in many churches of the imposition of Ashes during the liturgy of Ash Wednesday, where people are invited to receive the sign of the cross in ash on their forehead as a symbol of penitence, the cross being the symbol of our salvation.

[Francis] raised his eyes to heaven…and began to pray to Christ. Then he had ashes brought and made a circle with them round himself on the floor, and then put the rest on his own head……the blessed father remained in silence within the circle of ashes. He suddenly got up, recited the ‘Have mercy on me, God’ and left.’

(‘The Remembrance of the Desire of a Soul’ by Thomas of Celano)


 

Music for reflection:

Kyrie, eleison from ‘Fountain of Life’ by Margaret Rizza

Copyright: Kevin Mayhew Ltd (used with permission)