Collecting funds for the poor is an important work of mercy for the Church. In the first letter of St. Paul to the Corinthians, Paul requests that a collection should be taken every week in support of the Poor in Jerusalem. Paul felt that this was a necessary act of Charity. From that time until this, it has been the tradition of Catholic Churches to display a poor box to collect the donations of the faith community for the poor. A poor box has been placed on the step next to the communion rail in the sanctuary. Please be generous in remembering the poor of our community especially during Lent. As in previous years, we will be collecting nonperishable food items, which may be place on the altar before the Sacred Heart of Jesus statue.
Ash Wednesday comes from the Jewish practice of doing penance wearing “sackcloth and ashes.” The Old Testament tells us how the people of Nineveh, the Syrian King, Queen Esther and others fasted wearing sackcloth and ashes, Also, in the early Church, Christians who had committed serious sins were instructed to do public penance wearing sackcloth and ashes. The prophet Joel in his Old testament book insists that we should experience a complete conversion of heart, and not simply regret for our sins. We are invited to assimilate the true spirit of fasting and prayer.