Tuesday February 24, 2009

Lent: A Season of Sacrifice

Lent can be a way to observe President Obama's call for sacrifice.

Catholics preparing for the season of Lent that starts Ash Wednesday, Feb. 25, could draw some parallels to President Barack Obama's calls for national sacrifice.

"The sacrifice the president is calling for is more economical. However, the president wants us to realize that we're in this together, and it's good to take others into consideration," said the Rev. Gerald Chinchar, S.M., University of Dayton campus minister for catechetical programs.

Chinchar said Lent probably isn't a question of trying to sacrifice President Obama's way or offering some personal sacrifice for a more spiritual motive. He said it should be both.

"Lent is an opportunity to examine how you can do better," Chinchar said. "If you aren't doing OK with the Lord, well, it's an opportunity to review your life. What can we do better in terms of personal and spiritual well-being?"

Lent lasts until Good Friday, April 10. The University of Dayton will observe Ash Wednesday with Masses at 8 a.m., 10 a.m., 12:05 p.m., 4:30 p.m., 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. in the Immaculate Conception Chapel and at 9 p.m. in the McGinnis Center.

Mass attendees will experience the penitential rite of ashes on the forehead approximately 20 minutes into Mass. The ashes remind us of our mortality and judgment day.

During Lent at the University of Dayton, Campus Ministry will observe the Stations of the Cross in the renovated Marycrest residence hall chapel. As part of the renovations, the Stations of the Cross were etched into the floor, "so you get the sense of walking in Jesus' path of suffering," Chinchar said.

For more information, contact Shawn Robinson, associate director of media relations, at 937-229-3391 or srobinson@udayton.edu.