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Ash Wednesday is March 6, marking the start of the season of Lent. Bishop Perez to distribute ashes during noon Mass

Press Releases

February 28, 2019

(CLEVELAND, OH) – Ash Wednesday begins the season of Lent, so named because of the Church’s tradition of marking the foreheads of each member of the faith community with consecrated ashes on that day. Catholics receive ashes as a tangible reminder that Lent is a time for prayer, fasting and charitable works (almsgiving) in preparation for Easter, the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Ashes used on Ash Wednesday are made from the burning of palms blessed in the previous year’s Palm Sunday celebration. According to the Roman Missal, the palms are burned down into a fine powder and are mixed with holy water or chrism oil.

The season of Lent is sacred and connects Catholics to the mighty acts of God. Lent provides a yearly opportunity to renew and deepen one’s relationship with Christ over the course of forty days. During this time, the Catholic Church stresses practices of penance, Scripture reading and good works directed toward the love of God and neighbor to fulfill baptismal commitments to be Christ-like.

Ashes will be distributed during Masses at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist, located at East 9th Street and Superior Avenue in downtown Cleveland, throughout the day on Ash Wednesday. Masses are scheduled at 7:15 and 11 a.m., noon, 1:30, 5:10 and 7 p.m. The Most Reverend Nelson J. Perez, bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Cleveland, will distribute ashes during the Mass at noon.

For information on other Lenten celebrations such as the African American revival, Evening of Confession or to locate a parish within the Diocese of Cleveland visit .

Read a Lenten message from Bishop Perez here.

Contact: Brooke Uehlein
Manager, Communications
216-696-6525 Ext. 4460

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