THOUSANDS of Catholics across the Pacific celebrated Ash Wednesday this month as they began preparations for Easter. While this is a mainly Catholic tradition, more Christian denominations now take part in this ancient rite.
It marks the start of a 40-day journey which ends with the remembrance of Jesus Christ’s death on a cross some 2000 years ago and his resurrection three days later. That resurrection is the cornerstone of Christianity. Without that resurrection, Christians have no basis for their belief.
For it is by that death and resurrection that Christ conquered death and opened the doors of salvation to the world just as he stretched out his arms on the cross of Calvary in an eternal sign of acceptance of all. Christ’s gift was all-inclusive, without restrictions of ethnicity, colour or political belief. In 40 days Christians – Catholics, Protestants, Orthodox and Pentecostal – will gather in faith as they have since that first Easter to celebrate death, life and forgiveness.
Christians believe that the death and resurrection allow all people to be absolved of their sins if they so choose. But to seek absolution, we must first look within ourselves and realise how in so many ways we have hurt people through our words and deeds.
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