Today is the beginning of the Lenten season. While Ash Wednesday is not a holy day of obligation, many Catholics the world over attend Mass to receive the imposition of ashes.
Before Mass today, the priest will burn the blessed palm branches from last year’s Palm Sunday. He will then bless them with an antiphon and a verse of a psalm begging God’s grace and mercy.
He will then sprinkle the ashes with holy water and incenses them, place them on his own forehead, and then imposes the ashes on the heads of the congregation, the head being the seat of pride. He puts them on our foreheads in the shape of a Cross to remind us of our hope, and as he does so, he says the words of Genesis 3:
“Meménto, homo, quia pulvis es, et in púlverem revertéris
Remember, man, that thou art dust, and unto dust thou shalt return.”
As we trot off to Mass this morning to receive the imposition of ashes, I thought I would share with all of you what will be awaiting my children upon our return home.
A simple copywork sheet with the words of the priest from Genesis 3 to help them remember just what the importance of that cross is that graces their foreheads for all the world to see this day.
(You can print a copy for yourself–just click the picture to print without the copyright watermark.)
Check out these other ways to celebrate the Lenten season in your own Domestic Church!