A glass dish can grow dull and opaque with dust.
“But when you clean it, how it sparkles!” Father Robert Fields told an interchurch gathering at the dawn of Lent.
About 80 Christians from several congregations, including a large contingent from St. Michael parish in Kahoka and Shrine of St. Patrick parish in St. Patrick, gathered for an interchurch Ash Wednesday service in St. Paul’s United Church of Christ in Kahoka.
It was part of the Clark County Ministerial Alliance’s annual slate of weekly Lenten services, which were to be hosted by local congregations with messages given by local pastors.
Fr. Fields, pastor of the Kahoka and St. Patrick parishes and canonical administrator of St. Joseph parish in Canton and Queen of Peace parish in Ewing, preached the Ash Wednesday message and helped distribute ashes.
He spoke of how faith in God summons all Christians toward unity.
“We’re all in this together,” he said, “and our love for God shows in how we treat one another, in our words and our actions.”
Fr. Fields and Pastor Dixie Laube of St. Paul’s UCC traced ashes into the shape of a cross on the foreheads of those who stepped forward.
The people sang “Beneath the Cross of Jesus” and other hymns.
“We share a common origin,” Fr. Fields noted. “God raised us all up from the dust of the earth. We also share in the hope of one day dying with Christ in order that we may be raised up with Him for all eternity.”
St. Michael Church hosted the March 11 service, with Pastor Franz Kinkhorst of Kahoka United Methodist Church preaching the message.