Dominican priest urges Thomasians to remain hopeful during Lenten season

photo by RAINIEL ANGELYN FIGUEROA/ THE FLAME

THE LENTEN Season is not about being “artificially” sorrowful before Easter but should always be full of hope and happiness, a Dominican priest said. 

“This is not artificially making ourselves sorrowful so that when Easter comes, we will be happy. We don’t need to make ourselves lonely so that we will be happy. In fact, as Christians, we should always be full of hope and we should always be happy,” UST Vice Rector for Religious Affairs Fr. Pablo Tiong said during the Ash Wednesday mass at the Santissimo Rosario Parish.

The essence of Ash Wednesday, Tiong said, is to remind people of Christ’s presence even in the face of challenges, as symbolized by the ash crosses.

“May this be the spirit of the Lenten season, not artificially being sad just to become happy, but it is the following of Jesus, that is why we will accompany Him in His passion and suffering so that we can also be with Him in His resurrection,” he added.

Tiong encouraged Thomasians to reflect on the life of Jesus, noting that the spirit of the Lenten season is ‘penitential.’ 

“So that Jesus will be fresh in our hearts and our minds, I am hoping that we can join Him through his life,” he added.

“This is a reminder to us that in everything we do, it is important to return to the roots in our hearts, together with our public worship,” he said.

Ash Wednesday, which marks the start of the 40-day Lenten Season, is a day of repentance and prayer for Christians.

Devotees were allowed to receive ash crosses on the forehead for the first time in two years because of the improving COVID-19 situation in the Philippines. 

The University also illuminated the Arch of the Century, Main Building, Benavides Garden, and the Santissimo Rosario Parish with the Ukrainian flag colors of blue and yellow last Wednesday to express solidarity with the European country, which is being invaded by Russia. F – Arthur N. Apostol  

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