Bishop Garriga Middle Preparatory School, which opened in 1983, is starting a new tradition. For the first time in its 33 years, the school is hosting the lighting of the three crosses to commemorate the lenten season.
On January 30th, the BGMP School Advisory Council, along with students and parents/guardians, erected three crosses made by Joe Henry Morales, in order for them to be ready for Ash Wednesday.
The three crosses represent the crucifiction of Jesus Christ. The crucifixion of Jesus occurred in 1st century Palestine, most probably between the years 30 and 33. Jesus, whom Christians believe to be the Son of God as well as the Messiah (Christ), was arrested, tried, and sentenced by Pontius Pilate to be scourged, and finally crucified by the Romans.
"The message for our 185 students during the lenten season, is for them to make a positive change in their life, sacrifice with him, and walk with Jesus during this 40 day period," said Principle Rene Gonzalez.
Lent is a period of fasting, moderation, and self-denial traditionally observed by Catholics and some Protestant denominations. It begins with Ash Wednesday and ends with Easter Sunday. The length of the Lenten fast was established in the 4th century as 46 days (40 days, not counting Sundays). During Lent, participants eat sparingly or give up a particular food or habit. It’s not uncommon for people to give up smoking during Lent, or to swear off watching television or eating candy or telling lies. It’s six weeks of self-discipline.
Lent began as a way for Catholics to remind themselves of the value of repentance. The austerity of the Lenten season was seen as similar to how people in the Old Testament fasted and repented in sackcloth and ashes ( Esther 4;1-3, Jeremiah 6:26, Daniel 9:3).
"The crosses will remain up till Easter. During this time the public is more than welcome to come see the crosses until 8:30 p.m. They can drive by or get out of the car and sit on the bench tables and reflect what lent means to them,' said Gonzalez.
Back in December the SBGMP school advisory Council and students also put up five Christmas trees and lit them up to represent the evergreen tree, which stands for Christ himself. The Christmas tree is a wonderful symbol and reminder of human salvation and forgiveness through Jesus.