Everyday reality at times asks us to take the first step to build trust between people and peoples through signs of mutual welcome between races and cultures. At this moment in history, when so many doors are shut and so many initiatives flounder, in all the dioceses of the world we find the doors of the cathedrals open because we dare to make gestures of welcome for those who come from elsewhere, who have other beliefs and ways of thinking, living, believing, or simply of being.
The forty days of Lent that are about to begin can become a laboratory for opening up a way of thinking that is different from the models that have come from the processes of modernity. It is a propitious time for looking at the invisible side of reality. On a personal level it is a time to let go off only appearances and to go to the core, to let go of our lack of hope and the future to reveal our dreams and desires, to reject today’s dehumanization to draw out together our dormant humanity. At the social level, let us draw attention how from power we can arrive at service, how from the manupulation of power we can arrive at truth, how from the love of death we can arrive at a love for life.
All this is lived between two rites: from the ashes on the head on Ash Wednesday to the water on the feet at Holy Thursday. In itself this is a short path but it is able to restore confidence in Christ Jesus. So many saints have experienced that trust in the God of Jesus creates the opportunity to have a fresh look at reality, at others, to the future, and to ourselves. Knowing how to recognize the good of each person, knowing how to praise, knowing how to appreciate setting in motion all our energies creates fidelity and gives a stimulus to positive action. Looking at people with the eyes of God allows us in gratitude and profound admiration to expand the number of the faces of the trust, which in this time we can complete and contemplate.