Saturday, January 01, 2005

Looking ahead
Unfortunately, I can't simply keep my thoughts in the Christmas Season because a pastor must plan ahead for the next thing to come. I am already thinking ahead to Ash Wednesday and I wonder if readers can offer me some help (this may be a request about which only a priest may have experience, but you never know). Instead of buying little vials of ashes (as you can do from Church supply stores), I thought of putting out baskets in the back of church for people to deposit last year's blessed palms. Then we can burn them ourselves and provide both our own ashes and a way for people to properly dispose of their sacramentals. I think I can handle the setting them on fire part (although, what to burn them in?), but is there any trick to making the ashes? In the past I have heard priests mention the addition of something to make the ashes darker (something like a bit of charcoal). Does anyone have any ideas to share? Please comment and let me know.

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