A sign of faith

Students and staff wear the ash on their foreheads throughout the day as an outward symbol of their faith.

CBC Fremantle has ushered in the Liturgical season of Lent with a thought-provoking community Liturgy today.

Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the Lenten season and calls on all Christians to make conscious efforts to improve the world, ending on Easter Sunday.

With parents joining students and staff in the Gym this morning, Liturgies and Retreats Coordinator Matthew Silveira opened the gathering by speaking of the importance of taking on the challenges put to them.

Alexander Buckland, Ben Lye and Peter Hudson (Year 12) read Bible passages as part of the Liturgy, which illustrated the sentiment of the College's motto, palma virtuti – a Latin phrase meaning 'goodness is its own reward.'

During his Homily, College Chaplain and Fremantle Parish Priest, Fr John Sebastian called on the entire community to reflect on how they can commit to positive changes for Lent, in addition to giving up some of life's luxuries.

After a short blessing, Fr Sebastian anointed mentor teachers' foreheads with ashes, who repeated the symbolic gesture with the students in their Mentor Groups, reflecting a Catholic ceremony performed around the globe.

The theme of creating good was reiterated with the launch of Catholic international aid organisation Caritas Australia's Project Compassion initiative. Christian Service Learning Coordinator, Mr Matthew Stockton, encouraged boys to go without a simple pleasure over the next 40 days, and to donate the money saved to those less fortunate.

Director of Identity, Mr Neil Alweyn, called on students to focus on four key elements of celebrating Lent - prayer, penance, alms-giving and self-denial.

Ash Wednesday is one of the most important days on the Liturgical calendar, and holds special significance at CBC Fremantle. The Lenten season encourages boys to develop two key qualities of the CBC gentleman: recognising and valuing the 'other' in his life, and being selfless by nature.