Why Do Christians Get ‘Ashed’ On Ash Wednesday?

Pope Francis crosses a cardinal’s head with ash during Ash Wednesday Mass at the Basilica of Santa Sabina in Rome. Source: Reuters

If you’ve ever wondered why some Christians, especially Catholics get ashed on Ash Wednesday, you are not alone.I have been ashed a couple of times myself since i attended a catholic Primary school, but the reason or meaning of what we did then i never knew.I found this very informational article about Ash Wednesday and the ashing and i decided to share it here for the benefit of those who do not know like me.

What is Ash Wednesday?

Ash Wednesday is the start of 40 days fasting for Lent, a time of penance before Good Friday, marking the crucifixion of Christ. It actually lasts 46 day but some of those days are Sundays which are not fast days. It  began to be practised as we do it today from around the 5th century.

Why do Christians get ashed on Ash Wednesday?

It is a reminder that death comes to us all, from Genesis 3:19: ‘For dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.’ Originally it was a public act of penance for known wrong-doers in a community, but soon everyone in a church community began doing it in public recognition that sin is universal and we all need to repent of something. Continue reading

Source: Christian Today


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