Ash Wednesday Observed

Ash Wednesday marks the end of the season of Epiphany and the beginning of the season of Lent in the Christian church calendar.  The Ash Wednesday service is an invitation for followers of Jesus Christ to enter into a forty-day period of self-examination, penitence, self-denial, fasting, and prayer as a means of preparing for the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus at Easter. The season reminds us of our need to seek forgiveness in a genuine and heartfelt way both with others and with God.  One moves through this process of repentance knowing that it is granted through the Lord, whose sacrificial love grants pardon. During the Ash Wednesday service, ashes are imposed in the sign of the cross on one’s forehead.  The ashes remind us of our mortality and the cross is a reminder of the hope one has through Jesus’ redeeming death.  The forty days of Lent remind us of Jesus’ forty days in the wilderness, where he withstood the temptations and prepared for his own ministry, giving us hope that we can withstand our own temptations as we move toward the joy of Easter. This year Father Barrett held three short services on campus for faculty and students.  The ashes were imposed in a safe manner, observing Covid protocols.