How can the solidarity we feel – our faith’s call to emulate the Lord’s compassion toward those engulfed in darkness on the labyrinth of life – become concrete in our Ash Wednesday fasting? Consider spending $2 or less on the meager meal you will eat, remembering how much of the world lives on $2 per day or less. Take the time to place a glass of water on the table, remembering millions that suffer disease, poverty and conflict, for they have no glass of water to drink. May the water remind us of our baptism, which calls us to be Christians not just in name, but by the actions we undertake for justice and peace.
Let your daily walk, used to dispel a sedentary lifestyle, become a fast from consumerism. Place in a grocery bag items you would take if you were going to be homeless, and carry them while you walk. Feel the solidarity by remembering those without shelter — what it is like to place all your belongings in one bag — and think about the earthly treasures we reverence.
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