Ash Wednesday is tomorrow February 17th. As we start our Lenten Journey (from cross to resurrection and from ashes to light) let us do so in appreciation of the opportunity it offers to simply and hopefully reconnect to that deepest knowing of what resurrection actually means, and how it is, and can continue to express itself in every moment of our lives.
In his message for Lent 2021, Pope Francis calls on the faithful to “renew our faith, draw from the living waters of hope, and receive with open hearts the love of God.”
“This Lenten journey… is even now illumined by the light of the resurrection, which inspires the thoughts, attitudes and decisions of the followers of Jesus.”
In conclusion he writes:
Dear brothers and sisters, every moment of our lives is a time for believing, hoping and loving. The call to experience Lent as a journey of conversion, prayer and sharing of our goods, helps us – as communities and as individuals – to revive the faith that comes from the living Christ, the hope inspired by the breath of the Holy Spirit and the love flowing from the merciful heart of the Father.
May Mary, Mother of the Saviour, ever faithful at the foot of the cross and in the heart of the Church, sustain us with her loving presence. May the blessing of the risen Lord accompany all of us on our journey towards the light of Easter.
Rome, Saint John Lateran, 11 November 2020, the Memorial of Saint Martin of Tours
What God will do with it
We are entering the season that begins with a smudge.
That smudge is a testimony to what survives.
It is a witness to what abides when everything seems lost.
It is a sign that what we know and love may, for a time, be reduced to dust,
but it does not disappear.
We belong to the God who well knows what to do with dust,
who sees the dust as a place to dream anew, who creates from it again and again.
Life will continually lay us bare, sometimes with astonishing severity.
In the midst of this, the season of Lent invites us to see what is most elemental in us,
what endures: the love that creates and animates, the love that cannot be destroyed,
the love that is most basic to who we are.
This season inspires us to ask where this love will lead us
what it will create in and through us,
what God will do with it in both our brokenness and our joy.
Sharing this extract from a very beautiful writing by Jan Richardson entitled: Ash Wednesday: What God Can Do with Dust, from her blog “The Painted Prayerbook”.
© Jan Richardson. janrichardson.com link: The Painted Prayerbook
See link to Lenten Message for Pope Francis Renewing faith, hope and love: Pope Francis’ message for Lent 2021 – Vatican News
And Lent 2021: “Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem” (Mt 20:18). Lent: a Time for Renewing Faith, Hope and Love | Francis (vatican.va)
You can download The Lenten Message from Pope Francis – 2021 HERE