Ash Wednesday, a time to pause here, in the now.

My church, Saint Monica’s in Santa Monica, live-streamed Ash Wednesday mass. The main message of the homily was: Lent is a time to pause and remember: ashes to ashes dust unto dust.  We — people, the trees outside, the church, everything — will someday return to dust, so we should take time to remember the preciousness of our life, of our now, and to examine our priorities.

With our busy schedules, taking time to pause and reflect is an apropos and necessary Lenten message. I also liked the emphasis of everything returning to dust. To my mind, it  evoked the scientific notion of the elements returning to the cosmos after an organism dies or even when a building crumbles. It also led me to thoughts of pantheism and yoga, but I’m pretty sure that wasn’t the intention. Either way, the mass is a beautiful one, and I applaud its availability online as a technological leap into the 21st century for the Catholic church.

Whatever your beliefs or thoughts on the mass and the church, I hope you take a moment to pause today and appreciate the uniqueness of you, here, in the now.

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