Oi tobpinai ngaavi ku id di Tuhan Otumbazaan zou do…
The main Cathedral, both the left and right extended wings and the choir loft were fully occupied, with many more standing throughout the mass at the frontage. They came in full faith to celebrate Ash Wednesday, remembering Him through sacrifice.
The tri-lingual Mass in English, Chinese and Bahasa Malaysia was presided over by Bishop Julius Gitom. In his introduction, he reminded the faithful that Ash Wednesday is an invitation for us to reflect on who we are in God’s eye and in God’s heart. The imposition of ashes on our foreheads reminds us of our being human, of being creatures and also of our being nothingness. Our liturgical rites say that we are only dust and we will return to dust. But it also reminds us of our compassionate God, a God of mercy and love, slow to anger and abounds with love.
He continued to say that Lent is also a time of grace, a time for uplifting spiritual activities, especially to practice the three traditional pillars of lent namely prayer, fasting and almsgiving. By praying we are building a closer relationship with God for He desires that we are available at all times for Him, and are open to experience His love, peace and mercy. It makes us realize our brokenness and leads us to repentance, for God is all merciful and all forgiving.
He urged the faithful to embrace the custom of private and communal prayer, fasting and almsgiving. He appealed to all to contribute generously through the Lenten appeal envelope, the hallmark of the Catholic community for works of charity for the poor.-DOSPO