DAVAO City, March 8, 2011â€”Davao Archbishop Fernando R. Capalla called on Catholic faithful to actively participate in the Church’s observance of the Lenten season which officially begins on March 9, Ash Wednesday, calling for penance and conversion.
On Ash Wednesday, priests and lay ministers mark the faithfulsâ€™ foreheads with burned ashes from palms blessed during last yearâ€™s Palm Sunday.
In his homily on Sunday, the prelate noted the lack of understanding for most Catholics of the meaning behind the imposition of ashes on Ash Wednesday.
He lamented the fact that many Catholics simply allow ashes to be placed in their foreheads without knowing the value of sacrifice and repentance associated with the act.
Capalla said the Old Testament describes the putting of ashes on oneâ€™s head while clothed with white sack signifies oneâ€™s repentance from sin.Â But now, the Church has down away with the wearing of the white cloth, he explained.
He further called on everyone to repent and avail of the sacrament of reconciliation and lead better lives.
The prelate said the Lenten Season reminds everyone of Jesus Christâ€™s undying love and sacrifice to save one and all from eternal damnation.
â€œHe teaches and challenges us to be better Christians and be with Him in His Kingdom,â€ he said.Â (Karen Balangue Peralta)