The PNP Chaplain Service Director, PBGEN JASON D ORTIZO presided over the celebration of the Ash Wednesday Mass at the St Joseph Chapel, Camp Crame, Quezon City, marking the beginning of the Solemn Lenten Season this February 17, 2021 at 12:15 NN.

Lent is a season of prayer, fasting and almsgiving that begins on Ash Wednesday and ends at sundown on Holy Thursday. It is period of preparation to celebrate the Lord's Resurrection at Easter. During Lent, we seek the Lord in prayer by reading Sacred Scriptures, we serve by giving alms and we practice self control through fasting. We are called not only to abstain from luxuries during Lent but to a true inner conversion of the heart as we seek to follow Christ's will more faithfully. We recall the waters of baptism in which we were also baptized into Christ's death, died to sin and evil, and began new life in Christ.

Many know of the tradition of abstaining from meat on Fridays during Lent, but we are also called to practice self-discipline and fast in other ways throughout the season. Contemplate the meaning and origins of the Lenten fasting tradition in this reflection. In addition, the giving of alms is one way to share God's gifts - not only through the distribution of money, but through the sharing of our time and talents. As St John Chrysostom reminds us "Not to enable the poor to share in our good is to steal from them and deprive them of life. The goods we possess are not our, but theirs." - USCCB