Ash Wednesday, celebrated Feb. 13 this year, marks the start of the season of Lent for many Christian denominations.
Lent, which is traditionally observed by fasting, repentance and spiritual discipline, refers to the 40 days prior to Easter, excluding Sundays.
During some Ash Wednesday services, the priest, minister, or layperson will use ashes to make the sign of the cross on worshipers' foreheads. This action is meant to symbolize a person's repentance to God.
Here in Middletown, many churches are celebrating with a Mass and service.
First Church has a service at 7 p.m.
1055 Randolph Road, Ash Wednesday service 7 p.m.
Holy Trinity: Ash Wednesday Service at 12:10 p.m., followed by the first of a series of Lenten luncheons to be held in Middletown churches on subsequent Wednesdays.
First United Methodist Church: Will not be holding Ash Wednesday Service this evening, due to hazardous road conditions.
St. John Church: Mass with the distribution of ashes will be celebrated at 8 a.m., 12:10 and 7 p.m.
St. Mary Church: 9:15 .am. All are welcome to attend with the students
St. Pius Church: 7 and 9 a.m. Mass, 12:15 p.m. service, 7:30 p.m. Mass
South Congregational Church: 7:30 p.m. Service