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Spirit of the Lenten Season

St. Ignatius of Loyola, in his Spiritual Exercises, wrote that “Man is created to praise, reverence, and serve God, our Lord, and by this means to save his soul.” The season of Lent helps us remember that Heaven is our goal, and our time on earth a transitory trial. On Ash Wednesday, this ephemeral quality of earthly life is driven home when the priest makes the sign of the cross with ashes on one’s forehead and says “Remember man, that thou art dust, and to dust thou shalt return.” Ashes, in the Bible, are usually a sign of repentance and mourning. The ashes on Ash Wednesday are a sign that we are beginning a period of mourning and repentance for our sins and the sins of others. The Sig

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