March 5 is Ash Wednesday, which is the beginning of the season of Lent. The Ash Wednesday service is at 7:00 p.m. in the UMCC Sanctuary. But what’s with the ashes?
In the Old Testament, ashes represented death and sorrow for sins. Genesis 2:7 and 18:17 says that our bodies are made of ashes and at death we return to dust and ashes.
It is at the Ash Wednesday service that people come with all their faults and celebrate God’s mercy and forgiveness as foreheads are marked with ashes in the sign of the cross. The black paste is made from the ashes of palms from a prior Palm Sunday celebration, which are then mixed with oil.
With the imposed ashes as a reminder of human mortality, people are urged to “Come back to the Lord with all your heart; leave the past in ashes.”