Feb 27, 2007

"Theme for Lent is immigration"

You probably saw the article in the Los Angeles Times on February 22, "Theme for Lent is immigration" (click on this post's title).

Yes, on Ash Wednesday, or Miercoles de Ceniza, Cardinal Roger Mahony's headline theme for our Catholic Church's penitential season of Lent was "immigration."

"Immigration" got the headlines. Not penance, reparation, sorrow for sin. Not "work out your salvation in fear and trembling" (Phil. 2:12). Not "O God, be merciful to me, a sinner" (St. Luke 18:13).

Not "dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return" (Genesis 3:19). Not the Four Last Things we all face -- death, judgment, Heaven, hell.

Of course, the intent of our prayer, fasting and almsgiving in Lent should include helping our neighbor, who is Christ in disguise; and some of our neighbors are "immigrants."

But if we are a Church and not a political party, shouldn't we speak so that reporters and headline writers understand we are about salvation, not secular politics?


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