Christians Observe Ash Wednesday

Christians around the world are observing Ash Wednesday today ahead of the holy season of Lent that leads up to Easter.

While traditionally a Roman Catholic and Anglican event, some Orthodox and Lutheran churches will also be offering special services at which worshippers will be marked with ashes as symbol of penitence.

“Let us come before the Lord, humbly imploring Him to look in mercy on us, the whole Church, and the world,” a recommended liturgy from the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod reads.

The Lenten season lasts for 40 days and is a time when many Christians make sacrifices, such as giving up a certain type of food or fasting entirely. The Lenten season leads up to Easter, which this year falls on Apr. 16.