Ash Wednesday Mass at St Francis’ Church Melbourne - 18 February 2015
MASS CELEBRATED BY ARCHBISHOP DENIS HART AT ST FRANCIS’ CHURCH, MELBOURNE, FOR ASH WEDNESDAY, 18TH FEBRUARY, 2015, AT NOON.
Brothers and Sisters,
de Chardin proposed our Lenten journey as a pattern to live by. Practices that help us grow in self-awareness
and make us more available to others and more open to the other - the Lord.
Viewed in this light our practices of fasting, almsgiving and prayer
become very worthwhile. Fasting
clarifies our mind and reveals the limitations on our liberty, which we accept
when we indulge ourselves. Almsgiving
means we are more available to others in a brotherly and sisterly sharing,
unhampered by the artificialities of social life. Prayer makes us more open to God and more
aware of how we all depend upon his word and his plan of salvation.
and fasting go together to focus the mind and heart on God, making this journey
with the joy of spiritual longing and in a genuine search to be followers of
Jesus Christ. That is the privilege offered
to us in our journey to Easter, as together we begin our Lenten penance with
the blessing of ashes. Our reception of
ashes at the beginning of Lent makes us recognise ourselves as sinners. We ask God’s pardon for his Church and show
our sincere desire to change. Faith in
prayer and in the Lord’s word make us pass with him from death to life.
+ Denis J. Hart,
ARCHBISHOP OF MELBOURNE.