Ash Wednesday is the first day of Lent, the period of forty days of preparation for Easter. On Ash Wednesday we are reminded of our mortality and our dependence on God of for our lives both in this world and in the next. We receive the ashes as symbol that we are “dust and to dust we shall return.” This year we will not be able to impose ashes as we usually do by making the sign of the cross on our foreheads with the ashes.
Instead, we will offer two alternatives:
10 a.m. “Drive-through ashes.”
This will not include a liturgy. People will simply drive into our driveway and role down the window(s) of their car and we will sprinkle some dry ashes on their heads through the window.
4 p.m. Ash Wednesday Liturgy streamed on YouTube.
This will be the complete Ash Wednesday service, but no one will be present so no ashes will be imposed except the priest will put some on himself.
At home, you will be encouraged to find some symbol that speaks to you of your mortality and your intentions for a discipline for lent. You could make your own ashes or kiss a Bible (if you are planning to read more scripture during Lent), or hide your TV remote in a box (if you are planning to watch less television during Lent).
If you wish to make your own ashes this video can show you how: