greetings was listening to the radio yesterday and I heard that some non Catholic churches are doing drive through ash wednesday services.
the above link is one of the stories.
It’s a nice idea to bring this service to people who don’t have time but when I first heard it I didn’t really like the idea. I think it contributes to much for our get it right now mentality we have in this country. I also think by doing this drive through thing you are making it to much about the thing you receive and not enough about what the ashes actual symbolize. As I’m sure many of us know, the ashes symbolize that we are doomed to die and return to dust, that itself should make us reflect and I don’t think you can properly do that driving up to a church and getting ashes while in the car.
If people want to go to an ash wednesday service than they should make sacrifices in their day to do it. You have work at 8:30 and you don’t have time after work, go find a service at 7am and wake up early. I don’t think it is such a norm that so many people can’t go to some Ash Wednesday service in their day that they have to do a drive through.
There is a reason we need to go to Church services and spend time in prayer with community. Drive through ash Wednesday defeats this purpose. Also I would suspect many people who could go to an hour long service would pass up on that and just do the drive through thing.
So are my concerns well placed? Do you find it problematic that we have drive through ash Wednesday services?
Note: I would hope no Catholic Church would ever do this, the ashes are not even the most important thing on Ash Wednesday for Catholics.