Ash Wednesday. February 18, 2015

A number of the parishioners from St. Teresa of Avila were sent out into the bitter cold morning to distribute ashes to people on the El, as well as, on the Armitage ave. What an inspiration to begin the holy season of Lent. We enter this season primarily as a “we” and not an “I,” which certainly changes how we live out the days of lent. As followers of Jesus, we want our lives and the way we live them to draw others to Christ. We want to live life in such a way that those who encounter us, encounter the Living God.

Our Church is to be a living, breathing witness of a Christ who loves everyone to the point of giving away His life. Christ did this for you and every human being, no matter where they live, how they believe, or even IF they believe. The Church much pulse with Christ’s love AND His Presence. Each of us who is baptized has been “set on fire” with the power of Divine Love so that we may be instruments of transformation. The Spirit of baptism is waiting to get reignited in our hearts so that our lives become like the “burning bush” that Moses encountered on Mt. Sinai. Do people experience the fire of God’s love in the way I am living life? A question each one of us must honestly ask and answer. The way we answer will determine how we are to live out our Lent.

Lent, the season of springtime, is to reawaken the spirit of baptism. It is also the season to bring people to the waters of baptism and journey with them as they are immersed…submersed…into those waters , sharing in Christ’s death and Rising Out of those waters of death into Resurrection. We are stamped, sealed, confirmed by the fire of the Spirit. Baptism….Baptism….Baptism!!!! Lent is the season to renew and celebrate Baptism, the Sacrament that empowers us to be priests in the world.
Lent gradually thaws our cold and brittle spirits through prayers, fasting and acts of compassion and Justice.
We live Lent as a people and we celebrate this season TOGETHER, as a community with open doors and open hearts. We are to be a Church that is a hospital of mercy…a mercy that begins in our own hearts.
Whatever you do for Lent, whatever you give up, may God be your only audience. And God will lead you to the Joy of Easter.
Peace. Fr. Frank

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