From Cardinal Seán’s blog

“This Wednesday (Feb. 28) we celebrated Ash Wednesday at the Pastoral Center with a noon time Mass. I was glad to see the chapel filled with staff and others who joined us for the event... We must not allow our Lenten experience to be simply the ashes; that must be simply a recognition of our mortality and our dependence upon God. Our destiny to live with God forever and our life of the resurrection must begin now in our lives with discipleship, in the way we follow Christ into the desert for 40 days.” Pilot photo/Gregory L. Tracy

As we start the Holy Season of Lent this week, it is important that we try to use this period as a time to focus on our relationship with God and with others, and to draw closer to the Lord through availing ourselves of the Sacrament of Confession, acts of mortification and in general giving more time to prayer, reflection on the Word of God and fidelity to the Eucharist.

St. James Society’s new president

This week I also had the opportunity to welcome the new president of the St. James Society. Father Kevin Hays, a priest of the Archdiocese of Chicago, has been with the Missionary Society of St. James the Apostle for about 12 years in Peru, and is replacing the society’s out-going president, Msgr. Finbar O’Leary.

The St. James Society was a Boston-born initiative, instituted by Cardinal Cushing. In the recent past I have invited United States’ bishops to allow their priests to be a part of the Society for missionary experience. Historically, Boston and Ireland have been the strongest participants, but today we are also getting a number of priests from England and other dioceses in the U.S. to participate as well.

Also in this week’s blog:

Congratulating Archbishop Timothy Dolan on his appointment as the next Archbishop of New York.

Meeting with the major superiors of women religious serving in the archdiocese.

Meeting with a group of seminarians at the Cathedral.

Annual convocation of permanent deacons.

Visiting Msgr. Thomas McDonnell.

Gathering of Communion and Liberation.

Meeting with local Jewish leaders and Holocaust survivors.

Reopening of the Catholic Charities’ Teen Center at St. Peter’s in Dorchester.

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