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Pray for humility this Ash Wednesday, says Bishop Burbidge

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Around the world, Catholics marked the start of the penitential Lenten season by receiving ashes at Mass on Ash Wednesday. This year for health and safety reasons, Bishop Michael F. Burbidge allowed pastors to decide if they would distribute ashes by making the sign of the cross on the foreheads of recipients or by sprinkling the ashes on the tops of their heads, as suggested by the Vatican. 

The 12:05 p.m. Mass at the Cathedral of St. Thomas More in Arlington was filled with socially distanced adults and St. Thomas More Cathedral School students both in the nave of the church, in the balcony and in the basement Burke Hall, where attendees watched via simulcast. Bishop Burbidge encouraged attendees to approach the traditional Lenten disciplines of fasting, prayer and almsgiving with humility. 

“I suggest at the beginning of this sacred season we pray for the gift of humility as we strive to respond to the call of the prophet Joel in our First Reading — ‘Return to the Lord your God with all your heart,’ ” he said. “Humility is that gift that allows us to see ourselves as loved by God but at the same time to acknowledge that we are sinners who need to repeat the words of the psalmist — ‘Have mercy on me, O God, in your goodness.’ ”



© Arlington Catholic Herald 2021

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