It was an extraordinary moment in art history. In 2005, Gregory Gilbert’s exhibit, Ashes to Snow, came to the Pier in Santa Monica. It was a magical journey through foreign lands with untouched photographs.
In Western Christianity, today, Ash Wednesday marks the start of the season of Lent, 40 days prior to Easter (OBTW, Sundays are not included in the count). Lent is a time when many, but not all Christians prepare for Easter by observing a period of fasting, repentance, moderation and spiritual discipline. At Ash Wednesday service, the minister will make the sign of the cross with ashes onto the foreheads of congregants.
As I mentioned, not all Christian churches observe Ash Wednesday or Lent. But frankly, like Yom Kippur, you can’t go wrong spending time in reflection. Most mainlines observe, the Lutherans, Methodists, Presbyterians, Anglicans and Roman Catholics.
The Bible does not mention Ash Wednesday or the custom of Lent, however, the practice of repentance and mourning in ashes is found in 2 Samuel 13:19; Esther 4:1; Job 2:8; Daniel 9:3.