Where there is love there is life.
– Gandhi

Dear UBC,

It strikes me as significant that this year Ash Wednesday falls on Valentine’s Day. Significant because both of these days remind us of the power and the vulnerability of love and human life. St. Valentine went against the government, marrying Christians and spreading the word of Christ’s love to people despite the warnings. He gave his life for the hope that is manifested through love.

God came to earth as a human being, entering into every bit of the mess, pain, and wonder we find in this world. Jesus offered love, healing, and reconciliation where others had drawn lines and given up hope. Jesus came to us as one of us, reminding us of the good of God’s creation, the worth that is in all of us, and the vulnerability that is the human condition.

This Ash Wednesday we will remember that we are vulnerable, impermanent beings⎯from dust we have come and to dust we shall return. We will also be reminded of the love that makes all of life worth living. Love that gives us hope even in the face of death. Thanks be to God for love that is more powerful than death.

With hope and love,