The traditional Ash Wednesday procession will return to the Aventine Hill this Wednesday at 4:30 pm. As in previous years, it will begin at the Church of San Anselmo and will end at the Basilica of Santa Sabina. Pope Francis will preside over the celebration that marks the beginning of the liturgical season of Lent.
A year ago, the Pope was unable to attend the celebration because of his knee problems. In his place, the Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, presided over the Mass.
CARD. PIETRO PAROLIN
The rite of ashes, which we receive on our heads, is meant to save us from the mistake of putting the reward of men before the reward of the Father. This somber sign, which leads us to reflect on the fleetingness of our human nature, is like a bitter-tasting medicine that cures the disease of appearance.
The pilgrimage from the Church of San Anselmo to the Basilica of Santa Sabina on the Aventine Hill follows a steep path. This route symbolizes the path of faith that the Church travels during Lent.