Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Blessing and Giving of Ashes

During Mass during the Ash Wednesday services, the priest prayers over the burned palm fronds from last year's Palm Sunday liturgies with the following words:

Lord, bless these ashes by which we show that we are dust. Pardon our sins and keep us faithful to the discipline of Lent, for you do not want sinners to die but to live with the risen Christ, who reigns and lives with you forever and ever.

The priest or minister places the ashes on the foreheads of the faithful saying:

“Turn away from sin and be faithful to the gospel” or
“Remember that you are dust and to dust you shall return.”