May your Ash Wednesday be a time of reflection and promise.
Watch the Ash Wednesday Service with Rector Eric Hinds, Associate Rector Jay Watan, and Deacon Lauren McCombs at 10a PT on February 17, 2021.
What is Ash Wednesday?
Ash Wednesday or the Day of Ashes — is a day of repentance, when Christians confess their sins and profess their devotion to God. It marks the start of the Lenten period leading up to Easter, when Jesus was resurrected.
During the service, the clergy place ash on a worshiper’s forehead in the shape of a cross. The ceremony shows a person belongs to Jesus Christ, and represents a person’s grief and mourning for their sins — the same sins Jesus gave his life for when he died on the cross.
The ashes symbolize both death and repentance. During this period, Christians show repentance and mourning for their sins, because they believe Christ died for them.
When the clergy apply the cross of ashes, they say to the worshiper: ““Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.” He also may say “Repent and believe in the Gospel.”
It is not required that a worshiper wear the ashes for the rest of the day, although many Christians choose to do so.
Where do the ashes come from?
Traditionally, ashes used on Ash Wednesday are gathered up after palms from the previous year’s Palm Sunday are burned. They are then blessed before being used in the ceremony.
Palms symbolize Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem on the Sunday before his crucifixion.
When is Ash Wednesday in 2021?
Ash Wednesday always occurs six and a half weeks before Easter. This year Ash Wednesday is February 17, 2021.
Celebrant: The Rev. Dr. Eric Kimball Hinds
Assisting Clergy: The Rev. Jay Sapaen Watan
Preacher: The Rev. Lauren P. McCombs
Precentor/Music Director: Philip Keil
Singers: Members of the Chancel Choir
Altar Guild: Carol Kalb, Mary Quinlan
Altar Flowers: Luna Stafford
Videographer: Rowan Watan
Click on the image below to view or download the pdf.