Ash Wednesday and Lent
Lent is the 40 days, not counting Sundays, which begins on Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Saturday. Historically, the church has celebrated Lent since the 6th century and did so by calling for a period of fasting and reflection. Christians are called to reflect upon their own morality , on their sins and on God’s grace. It is a time of self denial to help us to remember that Christ denied Himself for us.
Ash Wednesday begins Lenten season. On Ash Wednesday, we are reminded of our morality and urged to confess our sins before God. The use of ashes applied to our heads acts to remind us that from the dust we are formed and to the dust we will return. Furthermore, the use of ashes has been a sign of repentance and mourning over sins since Biblical times.
We drape the altar table, pulpit and cross with cloths of purple. Purple is not only associated with royalty but also remorse over sin.
As you receive the ashes, take time to reflect on :
Your own upcoming appointment with death.
Where you would be headed had it not been for the grace of God.
The price that was paid for your sins.
How you might deny yourself for the sake of your own spiritual growth and how, through that denial, you might help someone less fortunate?