The Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, reminded Catholics during Mass on Ash Wednesday to strive for a “true conversion” rather than a mere cosmetic change in their lives.
He encouraged the faithful not to “put on appearances because the enemy of the Christian is hypocrisy.
“Jesus wants us to have an open heart. He has no desire for hypocritical attitudes.”
“It’s not about putting makeup on the soul, but about changing it,” he continued. Consequently, he invited the faithful to fast and give alms, as well as to pray—the three traditional practices of Lent.
“Return to God, be reconciled with God. Harden not your hearts, listen to the voice of the Lord. Make room in your hearts through prayer, penance and almsgiving so that the Lord can enter,” he said.