Sacrificium wristbands are back for Lent
By Nissa LaPoint
ASH WEDNESDAY SERVICES
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The little rubber wristbands that aided faithful in remembering their Lenten promises are making a comeback.
This year the Sacrificium bands, meaning “sacrifice,” are purple and the Denver Archdiocese ordered 85,000 for adults and children to use during Lent, the 40-day penitential season that prepares Catholics for Easter.
“They were so popular not only in Denver, but we had requests literally throughout the world that we knew it bore fruit in the parishes,” said Deacon Chuck Parker, director of the Office of Liturgy.
Lenten promise aid
Last year’s black wristbands, symbolizing the color of ashes, were sent to parishes throughout the archdiocese and as far as New Zealand and the Philippines. This year’s purple bands are representative of Lent’s liturgical color.
Each band is imprinted with the Latin word “Sacrificium” and worn throughout Lent as a reminder of what a person intends to sacrifice. Typically, a person fills out a promise card listing their intended sacrifices, such as additional prayer, fasting and almsgiving, and their parish keeps a copy until Easter.
It’s a concrete reminder of the disciplines of Lent amid a world that pulls the faithful in so many directions, Deacon Parker said.
The project was started by Father Randy Dollins, administrator of St. Mary Parish in Breckenridge, who said it occurred to him that people love to receive ashes.
The wristbands are a way to give people a reminder of these ashes throughout the Lenten season, Father Dollins told the Denver Catholic Register.
The wristbands may also be an inspirational example to others, said Deacon Parker, who wore a Sacrificium wristband last year.
“It sparked conversations among friends and at the marketplace,” he said. “So I was able to do a little evangelization, too.”
How to obtain
Last week the archdiocese received the wristbands and took in orders totaling 30,000 so far, said Tony Schoenberger, Office of Liturgy assistant.
The promise cards are available in English, Spanish and Vietnamese and may be mailed directly to those who order them. Many churches purchase the wristbands for parishioners, but individuals may buy them directly from the archdiocese at 25 cents each, he said.
DIA Ash Wednesday services: Wed., Feb. 22
Due to popular demand, the archdiocese is also bringing back Ash Wednesday Liturgy of the Word with distribution of ashes, and confessions to travelers and employees at the Denver International Airport this year.
On Wed., Feb. 22, priests will hear confessions from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and celebrate a Liturgy of the Word with distribution of ashes at noon and 2 p.m. in the Interfaith Chapel on level six, East Terminal of the airport.
For more information, contact the Office of Liturgy.