Ash Wednesday this year was not a “fair weather” day. For us, it included snowfall and winds. We understand that much of the nation on Ash Wednesday felt the effects of another “winter blast,” keeping Spring at bay. Nonetheless, for us the day included the Divine Office as usual and the Conventual Mass as light was returning to the Chama canyon. The imposition of ashes, a hallmark of Ash Wednesday Mass, took place at the usual time, after the Gospel and homily of the day. Monks and guests bore the marks that call to mind that “we are dust and to dust we shall return.” Morbid thinking? Hardly, as it points to the reality that life on earth is short, and the importance of living in the present and giving all to God and neighbor, as we are called to do each day.
May this Lent, (the word is derived from the same origin as our word “length” and “lengthen”), be an opportunity to “expand our horizons” as we heed in the call to follow in the footsteps of the Master. We are to “bear one another’s burdens,” as Saint Paul describes it, in our journey to Easter in forty days and to the Easter of eternity in heaven.
A blessed and holy Lent to all!
Be assured of the prayers of the monks of Christ in the Desert and please keep us in your prayers. Thank you.
Abbot Christian and the monks