THE IMPOSITION OF ASHES
The Ash Wednesday liturgy begins the season of Lent with Holy Eucharist and the imposition of ashes. The smudge of ashes across the forehead is such an arcane thing. It may even be hostile to the sensibilities of one who hears the words, “Remember that you are dust and to dust you shall return.” Do you think you are dust? Do you ever even consider the possibility? To be reminded of our mortality feels like someone is pointing toward a failed aspect of our personhood, as if to say, “You are king no longer.” The ashes are a mark of the fraud of our life, the sad realization that our kingdoms don’t come and our will is not done, at least in any lasting way. The open secret, because it is a fully known reality, is that we are ash and to ash we shall return. It is a yearly re-entry into a conversation about our souls, which is to say, about our eternal relationship with God.
THE SACRAMENT OF RECONCILIATION
The Sacrament of Reconciliation will be offered after both the morning and evening Eucharist services. Akin to the Sacrament of Confession in the Roman Catholic Church, this sacrament is a healing way for us to be restored to God when our relationship with God has been broken. A confessor will be available in the Church to hear your confession privately and confidentially.