For many believers, the annual celebration of Ash Wednesday is an essential practice of their faith. Among Catholic communities in Colorado, its practice is very popular. Yet for many Christians its origins remain a mystery.
Believed by many to have started in the 6th century A.D., its celebration is marked by the placing of an ashes in the form of a cross on the forehead of the recipient. Seen as a staple of Roman Catholic and Anglican traditions, its practice is gaining popularity among more evangelical protestant groups.
The heart of Ash Wednesday is to remind believers of God's mercy towards them while encouraging merciful acts towards others. For more information on Ash Wednesday and its origins and practices, click here.