Potpourri Of Popery, First Friday In Lent Edition

Must have been a very moving ceremony? The photo at right was taken by one Rob Rich, a civilian contractor working in Iraq supporting the troops in ways he can't reveal. He spent some leave time in Rome, where he attended Midnight Mass and took this interesting shot while standing on a chair and moving his camera as the Pope passed. The big red splotch is the top of a Swiss Guard. He (Rich, not the Guard) sent it for use here through a mutual friend. That's not the only way the Pope is on the move, however.

For example, he visited the first of the station churches for Ash Wednesday (Zadok explains the custom). On Sunday he starts his annual Spiritual Exercises, and then there's a whole list of liturgical exertions for Lent, Holy Week & Easter. Then: on to the U.S., and from there soon after, Oz.

Update: Well, it was the First Friday in Lent when I started this post, but I won't be able to finish it before the sesquicentennial of Lourdes is observed tomorrow, with a plenary indulgence available (details at the link). So I'm going with this extremely abbreviated version now, and will strive for the usual documents and news round-up later this coming week. Those of you in my diocese can observe the feast thus (you Traddies, there's an extraordinary form mass at St. Bernadette's, Silver Spring, 7:30 pm tomorrow).

Lent-wise, Against the Grain excerpts the Pope's Lenten message & Ash Wednesday remarks, and links to a few Lenten Resources here. Archdiocese of Washington's repeating the highly successful "Light is on for you" program: Confession 6:30-8pm every Wednesday, every parish.