Did you hear a good Ash Wednesday sermon? Share a point.

If you heard an Ash Wednesday sermon which was worthwhile, share ONE SINGLE POINT you can recall for us, as concisely as possible… a single sentence, if possible.

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  1. jas548 says:

    “We say no to lesser goods so that we can say YES to a greater good”

  2. Thomas S says:

    “It’s good to see that the worst sinners in the parish have shown up today.”

  3. Huxtaby says:

    “Let us all turn TOGETHER towards the Lord”

    The Parish I attend the pastor is building “brick by brick” and at his two Masses yesterday celebrated ‘ad Deum’ from the Offertory until after Communion. Kudos to him.

  4. jkking says:

    “Fast we will, pray we will, give alms we will. But instead of focusing what you’re going to do, focus on what God wants to do through you.”

  5. ldknutson says:

    “Lent is not just about giving something up; it’s about trading that something in for the betterment of your soul.”

  6. cuaguy says:

    “Yes, Ash Wednesday is the start of Lent. We all know that. Yes, we get Ashes and they remind us of the Penitential nature of this season. However, do not forget this once your Ashes are gone. Ash Wednesday doesn’t exist for you all to come here and get ashes. No, it exists to remind you where you came from, and where you will return to. Remember, man, thou art dust, and to dust thou shalt return.”

  7. Paraphrased:

    Prayer, fasting and alms-giving should all be observed. Prayer is oriented to God; fasting is oriented to ourselves by cleansing us of attachments and taming the will; and alms-giving is oriented to our neighbor whom we are commanded to love.

  8. benyanke says:

    “The ashes remind us of what we are, and what our bodies will be in the end, mere dust.” (shame on me for not remembering the better line directly following this).

  9. Folks, paraphrases are fine! That’s great, because they can be CONCISE!

  10. beez says:

    Priests should remember that on Ash Wednesday, Good Friday (venerating the Cross) and St. Blase (blessing throats), those members of our community who are restricted from receiving the Eucharist are able to come forward to the altar for a blessing. Rather than turn them away, encourage them, that they be thus be emboldened to return to fuller communion. (Given at the seminary)

  11. Peggy R says:

    The priest did say to do more than give up something, do something in the affirmative, so to speak. We should pray to do what the Lord’s asking us to do to draw closer to Him this Lenten season.

  12. Kent says:

    If we don’t die to ourselves during Lent we can’t rise with Christ at Easter.

  13. EnoughRope says:

    The word Satan was mentioned. This really was important for me- all to often we forget the Adversary- he is out there and he wants your soul. It was good to hear on a liberal college campus.

  14. At a 10 AM Mass with mainly (Albertan, and therefore inexpensive compared to elsewhere) Catholic High School students in attendance:
    “By giving up X, we make room for prayer, our neighbours, and God.”

    I say this was a surprise because at the start of the Mass this priest let everyone know he believed in “participation in celebration” and often got the congregation to say its “Amens” and “And also with yous” louder by repeating the last line of the prayer again. At age 52, priests should not attempt to be “cool”.

    I doubt the majority of children there were practicing and aware Catholics (or even Catholic), so this phrase particularly stuck out as something that needed to be said.

  15. markjohn316 says:

    God wants to bless us – we as sinners misinterpret blessings as condoning sin – penance allows us to embrace and acknowledge our sinfulness so that we can receive the blessings he wants to give us.

  16. Hans says:

    First line (in Spanish and English) to an overflowing church:
    ‘First, I want to take this opportunity to wish some of you a merry Christmas, as we may not see you again until then.’

    He then went on to explain briefly the reason and necessity of coming to Mass every Sunday.

  17. Gregory DiPippo says:

    Not this year, but pretty good anyway.

    “For years they told us, ‘You don’t need to give something up for Lent. Instead of giving something up, DO something.’ No. Give something up. AND do something.”

  18. Tom A. says:

    REPENT, was the first theme, then RECONCILE was the second.

  19. TomB says:

    In addition to a very interesting discourse on the history of Ash Wednesday and Lent, Fr. gave us a very practical plan of action for Lent: Extra prayer every day, extra spiritual reading every day, concentrate on the eradication of one habitual sin as a gift to Jesus, do something for someone every day, and deprive ourselves of one thing we like. We have the most wonderful and practical priest!

  20. Mike says:

    “The Saints won the Superbowl…but that celebration in New Orleans, well, maybe they should change their name. As Our Lord chose the twelve, he still seeks special friends, to be especially close to Him. Would you make the cut?”

  21. Lee says:

    Dynamite sermon at Mt. Angel, very old school and wonderful. The thing that struck me was: When you fast, if you don’t feel the pinch, you’re probably not fasting.

  22. jmgarciajr says:

    “Go to Confession, go to Confession, go to Confession.”

  23. Mary G says:

    “Lent is the time to make a good Confession”

  24. “Wash off your ashes when you’re ready to stop sinning.”

  25. Prayer, fasting, and almgiving arise form the three temptations of Christ in the Desert, which will be the Gospel next Sunday.

    They are not about “rules” but about learning the virtues contrary to vices.

    So almsgiving defeats avarice; fasting defeats intemperance, and prayer defeats the injustice of failing to offer our whole life to God.

  26. bigtex says:

    The only thing we can offer God when we die, is what we’ve given up in this life.

  27. There is no love without self-sacrifice.

    Also, we can do all sorts of self-sacrificing, but the ultimate giving (and thus, love) is the sacrifice of your total self, completely.

    From Cardinal George’s Mass at University of Illinois Chicago.

  28. In a world full of instant gratification through things such as texting, tweeting, and e-mail, we must take Lent as a time to slow down and reexamine our conversation and relationship with God.

  29. Athanasius says:

    “The Church even in her current lax state requires in Canon law that Catholics take on a special penance during Lent. What I often find is that people will fail on one occasion, and then completely leave off their penance as if well, that didn’t work. The Church does not give you the option to do this. If you fail one time, get up and keep doing it.”
    -Fr. Chad Ripperger, FSSP
    Post Falls Idaho

  30. trespinos says:

    Mourn with me my incipient Alzheimers, in that, as hard as I have tried, I cannot recall even the slightest part of a phrase or theme from Ash Wednesday’s homily. {sigh}

    OTOH, it may be that no part of it was memorable. The possibility must be admitted.

  31. Gregg the Obscure says:

    We are dust. If you break down our bodies to the constituent elements, they’d be worth only a few cents. Our immortal souls, though, are of infinite value.

  32. CantateDomino says:

    “The Cross is the instrument of our salvation. *Embrace* it.”

  33. Bruce says:

    “You should give something up, however you should also take something up”

    “Is fasting a challenge? Of course – that’s the point!”

  34. doublenan says:

    We are all going to die. We will all return to the dust from whence we came. Lent is an opportunity to begin the good habits we can continue nurturing for the rest of our lives: Prayer (including frequent Confession), fasting, and alms-giving.

  35. I did a bit of judicious editing.

    Concise quotes or paraphrases of a single good point from your Ash Wednesday sermon, please.

  36. bubba says:

    P, F,& A provide both physical and spiritual discipline-something we all need. (In spades Fr, in spades)

  37. MaryMaria says:

    “This lent rid yourself of anything in your life that comes between you and your ability to have a good relationship with God.”
    A little overwhelming I admit but a great goal to work towards

  38. Jason Keener says:

    “Prayer, penance, and almsgiving.”

  39. jmtcmkb says:

    Our fasting should be from the heart, from things that separate us from God and one another, unforgiveness, bitterness,resentment, gossip, negativity and the like…because these things can have no part of God.

  40. jokonski says:

    Fasting and penance penance must be done in secret – otherwise you have already received your reward.


  41. haleype says:

    Our Lord who had no need of repentance fasted and abstained for 40 days and 40 nights in the desert; can we, who have great need of repentance, do anything less?

  42. At our Ash Wednesday Mass, the good monsignor opened with a very good story, leading to the mass’s theme. He was working out at the gym a few days prior, and ended up meeting a young college student doing likewise. They got to talking, and the young man asked monsignor what he did for living. After responding that he was a Catholic priest, the young man became flustered and admitted he hadn’t been to mass in ages. “I’m trying to seek God within” he said, weakly justifying himself. The monsignor responded, “Well, that’s good! That’s is exactly what Lent is all about! Looking into oneself and finding God!” The good monsignor then added, “I really hope that young man is here somewhere tonight!”

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