The Bishop's Ash Wednesday Message
Ash Wednesday 2017
have just returned from the service of imposition of ashes at the St. Andrew's Schools chapel. I was reminded of both the innocence of youth and the frail reality of our world. Looking out beyond the faces of the boys and girls, I could see past them through the great doors of the Cathedral to the houseless person walking by in the rain. The reality of the simple phrase "[r]
emember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return" was incarnated all around me. These young ones, like me, are walking along a path that might drive them far from other people (even to houselessness in the rain), but not from the love of God.
I know too well that I have been "deaf to God's call to serve, as Christ served us" and that I "have not been true to the mind of Christ" (see BCP page 267). Yet here I was in the moment of forgiveness with children made in the very image of God. Renewal beckons. Love abounds.
This Lent I am committing myself to seek that forgiveness and love "by self-examination and repentance; by prayer, fasting, and self-denial; and by reading and meditating on God's holy Word." Specifically, I will be reading (and listening closely to the words of) St. Francis de Sales (1567-1622) and studying the Gospel of John. I have much travel in the month of March and that means the quiet of airplanes.
We live in unusual times. I pray that this Lent provides a time for your reflection and renewal for the days ahead. I hope you can find the time to pray and welcome God's love.
Your servant in Christ Jesus,
The Right Reverend Robert L. Fitzpatrick
The Episcopal Diocese of Hawai'i
229 Queen Emma Square
Honolulu, HI 96813-2304
The Episcopal Church in Micronesia
911 North Marine Corps Drive
Upper Tumon, Guam 96913
Office: (808) 536-7776, ext. 302
Fax: (808) 538-7194
HE LANAKILA MA KE KEʻA: Victory through the Cross