Lent

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Lent, from on Ash Wednesday to Saturday, is the period of prayer, penance, repentance, almsgiving, self-denial and sin atonement to prepare and celebrate the faith mysteries during Holy Week.

Many Christians fast, avoid luxuries, receive Penance, and follow a spiritual discipline, like the Stations of the Cross during Lent.

Many Catholic and some Protestants churches remove flowers from their altars on Holy Friday, and veil crucifixes, statues and other religious symbols with violet fabrics.

Ash Wednesday — a day of fasting and abstaining from meat consumption — involves the blessing of ashes made from blessed palm branches of the last Palm Sunday.  The priests place the ashes on the front of penitents and say expressions like “repent and believe in the gospel.”  Ash Wednesday is not a holyday but predisposes Christians to Penance.

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