Black Wristbands to Help Catholics Observe Lent

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DENVER, Colorado, MARCH 8, 2011 (Zenit.org).- The Archdiocese of Denver is distributing over 100,000 black wristbands this Lent as a way to help parishoners remember to stick to their Lenten promises.



The archdiocese reported in a press release that the wristbands are part of a program titled "Sacrificium" (sacrifice), which is also imprinted on the black bands.

The wristbands, the archdiocese stated, will remind those wearing them "not only of what Jesus did for them when he suffered and died on the cross, but what they have promised to do – or not do – during the solemn season of Lent."

"The color black recalls the color of ashes, which Catholics receive on their foreheads on Ash Wednesday and reminds them of their mortality," the statement added.

Ash Wednesday, observed on March 9 this year, marks the beginning of Lent. Catholics observe the 40 days of Lent through additional prayer, fasting, and works of charity.

"In addition to wearing their black wristbands, Sacrificium participants are also invited to complete a promise card, which details their specific sacrifices to be made throughout the 40-day period," the archdiocese reported.

"Oh, there's a lot enthusiasm on Ash Wednesday," said Father Randy Dollins of St. Mary Catholic Church in Frisco, who developed the Sacrificium program. "Much more, let's say, than there is on the fourth Sunday of Lent!"