Ash Wednesday: A Time to Fast from Fear
This rather is the fasting that I wish:
Releasing those bound unjustly,
Untying the thongs of the yoke;
Setting free the oppressed,
Breaking every yoke;
Sharing your bread with the hungry,
Sheltering the oppressed and the homeless;
Clothing the naked when you see them
And not turning your back on your own.
The prophet Isaiah challenges the people of God to consider a new way to worship and serve God. Beginning on Ash Wednesday and carrying throughout Lent, we Catholics and all Christians have a special season for our fasting and repentance. Together, through our parishes, congregations and organizations… Let’s pray and act on Isaiah’s “fasting”:
- Let’s fast from our fear of others and celebrate what we share
- Let’s ask ourselves “How are we turning our backs on our own? How can our parish or congregation embrace all immigrants, including many of whom share our faith tradition”?
- Let’s set free the oppressed in an unjust immigration system and an unjust legal system where people are denied the right to vote
- Let’s fast from actions that hurt God’s Creation
As we fast in this way we are given great hope: “If you remove from your midst oppression… Then the light will rise for you in the darkness, and the gloom shall become for you like midday… “ (Isaiah 58)