My Lenten cure

by Fr. Jeff

As I made the sign of the cross on her mother’s forehead, I saw her arm go straight for the bowl. At around two years old, she wanted to feel the ash between her fingers. The black powder was too much to resist.

Luckily, my priest-like reflexes saved us from a potential disaster.

I’ve said it before: I love being Catholic. I love being a part of the Church that gives me something to see, taste, touch, smell, and hear. There’s something very human about a faith that is rich in sense imagery; it’s simply appealing. That’s probably why we had hundreds of people today come for their #ashtag. It’s a tangible expression of what I hope is an inward reality of penance.

Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.

When it came time for Communion, I was prepared. “The Body of Christ,” I said to her mother. With that, she practically dove for the paten. My priest-like reflexes averted disaster, again.

As the mothered carried her away, my mind turned to You. Perhaps You were showing me something in that little child’s desire:

“If I but touch his clothes, I shall be cured.” -Mark 5:28

Ashes and Eucharist,

my Lenten cure.