Tagle says Lent calls for conversion of heart

“Ang pinakamahalaga natin siguro na kontribusyon sa bayan at sa mundo ngayon ay ang pagbabagong-loob.”

 

In his homily for Ash Wednesday Mass held at the chapel of the Archdiocese of Manila in Intramuros, Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio G. Cardinal told the faithful that during the Lenten Season, conversion of heart would be the nation’s most significant contribution to the world.

 

The archbishop of Manila added that aside from repentance for our sins, the faithful are also called to pray, fast and give alms to the poor.

 

He urged the faithful to unite themselves to the Lord by allowing His grace to pour in their hearts, to ask for forgiveness and to turn away from their evil ways.

 

“Nasa kalooban ng tao nagmumula ang inggit, ang galit, ang kayabangan, ang paghihiganti, ang pag-iisip ng masama sa kapwa. Hindi 'yan galing sa labas. Galing lahat 'yan sa loob. At inaanyayahan tayo, bumalik na sa Diyos, magbagong-loob. Ang pagbabagong-loob ay pagbabalik ng aking loob mula sa loob, sa ating Diyos,” he said.

 

In his Lenten message, Pope Francis states the two simple things to do to turn our hearts to Christ again, which the Cardinal reiterates during his homily are the Gift of the Word of God and gift of neighbor.

 

Gift of the Word of God

 

Cardinal Tagle said that often times the faithful give importance of those words that do not have meaning while taking for granted the Word of God.

 

“Minsan, mas binibigyan natin ng panahon ang kung anu-anong salita. Hindi naman nangagagaling sa Diyos, pero 'yun ang pinahahalagahan. Nagre-react tayo at tumutugon sa mga salita na hindi naman galing sa Diyos. Buti pa 'yung mga walang katuturang salita, pinakikinggan at may tumutugon. At walang tigil ha. Pero 'pag salita ng Diyos, meron bang tumutugon? Meron bang interesado?” he said.

 

He stressed that the Word of God is a gift that would help us nourish our faith.  He as well encouraged the faithful to proclaim it by reading the Holy Bible.

 

“Ang Salita ng Diyos ay liwanag sa ating paanan, sa ating paglalakbay. Ang Salita ng Diyos, kapag pinakinggan at hinayaang tumimo sa ating puso, ito ang magiging daan para lalo tayong makakilala sa Diyos at maiugnay natin ang kalooban natin sa kanyang kalooban. Salita ng Diyos,” he said.




Gift of Neighbor

 

Cardinal Tagle pointed out that selfish motives keeps us away from the Lord. It hinders us to see our neighbors as a gift from God. He further added that a person that is self-centered becomes unreal with his actions and seeks for fame and attention.

 

“Ang isang kinakailangang pagbabagong-loob ay ito. Minsan ang loob natin, nakabaling lamang sa sarili. Kaya nangyayari, 'yung sinabi ni Hesus sa Ebanghelyo, marami ngang ginagawa, pero sa panlabas, parang mabuti 'yung ginagawa, pero ginagawa pala para magpakitang tao, para kunin ang atensyon ng ibang tao at sabihin, "Tingnan ninyo ako." "O nagdo-donate ako, o picture naman diyan." Kahit 'yung mga mabubuting gawa, hindi ginagawa para sa kapwa, kundi ginagawa para pala sa sarili. Mapansin ako, tumanyag ako, papurihan ako,” he said.

 

“Pag nakakita kayo ng kapwa-tao, huwag 'nyong iisipin, "Pabigat 'yan, problema 'yan." Biyaya 'yan. Dapat mahalin. Dapat alagaan. Dapat tulungan,” he added.

 

The season of Lent begins with Ash Wednesday.

Ash Wednesday is a day of universal fasting and abstinence in the Church. Fasting is required from ages 18 to 60, and abstinence is from age 14 (CIC 1252).  

On this day, ashes are blessed and imposed after the homily during the Mass. These ashes came from the palms blessed in the previous Palm Sunday which have been burned. The priest, deacon or lay minister while imposing the ashes, says Repent, and believe in the Gospel.

The 40-day Season of Lent runs from Ash Wednesday until the Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday. During Lent the altars are not decorated with flowers and musical instruments may be played only to give necessary support to the singing. However, on the fourth Sunday of Lent, musical instruments may be played and the altar decorated with flowers. In most Churches the religious images are covered with purple cloth.

 

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