As the Lenten season begins with the celebration of the Ash Wednesday, a ranking official of the Catholic Church lashed out at “hypocrites” who take advantage of Holy Week to satisfy themselves and their interests.
Manila Archdiocese Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, who led the Ash Wednesday mass at the Arzobispado de Manila chapel, lambasted the people who use generosity to mask their attempt to gain fame.
He said a good example of hypocrites are politicians who take advantage of the Holy Week to organize religious activities that only promote their political career.
“That is not holiness. That is definitely not a way to return to God. That is hypocrisy!” Tagle said.
He also said fasting should not be taken as a way of losing weight.
This Lenten season, the Church teaching revolves around transforming oneself in accordance with the Lord’s image. Thus, Tagle urged the Filipino Catholics to transform themselves by imitate the teachings of the Lord.
Echoing the message of Pope Francis, he said Lent is a wonderful season to recognize how far the people have been from God and to awaken also in “ourselves the desire.”
The true meaning of Lent can be achieved by discipline through alms giving, prayer and by fasting.
“So these are not just exterior practices. Through these practices we hope that our hearts, our full hearts, will turn to God,” he said.
He urged the people to take part of the Church’s Fast2Feed program, which aims to feed hungry children from disaster-stricken areas in Bohol, Leyte and Cebu.
“We strive to be a little poorer so that somebody else could be enriched by our generosity and our love,” he said. ROBERTZON F. RAMIREZ