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Ash Wednesday began the season of Lent. Lent is a time given to us to be renewed in God's love and mercy as we prepare to commemorate and celebrate the passion, death and resurrection of the Lord.

This year Ash Wednesday was on February 14, which was also St. Valentine's Day. It was also the day of the terrible violence that took place in Parkland, Florida that killed 17 people.

The violence of the Florida school shooting has affected us all. There are now many voices joining in a call to change gun laws in our country. As important as changing laws may be it will not, I fear, end the violence that seems to be so much a part of our daily lives.

Lent reminds us that we reap the harvest of the seeds that are sown. The call of God is to sow seeds that are centered in God's love and mercy for all peoples. If we are to experience a lasting peace and an end to violence then we need to sow the seeds of God's love. Our hearts need to be one with the heart of Christ who even on the cross prayed for forgiveness for those who had done him harm. May this Lenten season help us to be one with Christ and bring through our words and actions a lasting peace to our world and healing to the hearts of all who suffer from violence.

Father Greg Havel is the pastor at Church of the Crucifixion in La Crescent.


Coulee Courier and Houston County News editor

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