Lent – or 40 days of prayer, purification and sacrifice many Christians undertake in preparation for Easter – has begun, and if you were thinking about going cold-turkey with social media, this might change your mind.
The bishop and priests of the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh were marking the beginning of Lent with “ashes to go,” in hopes of reaching people who cannot, or would not feel comfortable, attending an Ash Wednesday service at church.
Hundreds of people took part in the lunch hour ceremony on Ash Wednesday, being reminded of their own mortality.
One local Episcopal church knows many people are too busy to go to church to get ashes, so they came up with an unusual way to help.
In the Roman Catholic Church, Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of a 40-day period in which church members are asked to engage in prayer, fasting and doing good works in preparation for Easter, commemorating the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
As Roman Catholics marked Ash Wednesday, 21 priests suspended by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia a day earlier for alleged sexual abuse claims were identified.