In response to Walt Weaver's Feb. 23 letter ("Ash Opportunities"), he and your readership should know that ashes were distributed outside of Mass at St. Mary of Mercy Church located Downtown. Mr. Weaver should learn his facts (especially as he teaches religion) before he criticizes the church. Mr. Weaver also praises a Carmelite monastery for providing ashes outside of Mass. The Carmelite monastery is part of the church, and I am sure that its practice is sanctioned by the bishop.
As for busy people having the opportunity to participate in Ash Wednesday services, if it is important to them they will find the time just as they do for secular events. Regarding young Catholics bereft of Ash Wednesday observances, the blame for that can in part be ascribed to their parents and teachers.
MARSHA K. MAIETTA