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Next Wednesday, 14 February Seville Cathedral will celebrate the Mass of the Imposition of Ashes that begins Lent. It will take place ateight in the evening and will be led by the Archbishop of Seville, Monsignor José Ángel Saiz Meneses. There will also be imposition of ashes at the usual morning masses at 8.30, 9:00, 10:00, 12:00

The 20:00 mass will led by Monsignor Saiz Meneses can be followed on the Cathedral’s YouTube channel https://youtube.com/live/4Os3252qgCs?feature=share

Lent begins with Ash Wednesday, and it is a time of prayer, penitence, and fasting. Forty days that the Church marks out for the conversion of the heart. The imposition of ashes reminds Christians that our lives on earth are fleeting and our true life will be found in Heaven.

History and meaning of Ash Wednesday

Since the year 384 A.D., Lent has acquired a penitencial meaning for all Christians, and since the 11th century, the Church has made a custom of the imposition of ashes to begin the 40 days of penitence and conversion.

The ashes that are used come from the burning of the palms used on Palm Sunday the previous year. It is meant to remind Christians that what was a symbol of earthly glory will soon be reduced to nothing.

Furthermore, the imposition of ashes reminds us that some day we will all die and our bodies will become dust. It is a way of remembering that all material things built up on Earth come to an end; on the other hand, all good things built up in the soul will be taken into eternity.

When the priest imposes the ashes (on both children and adults), one should have an attitude of desire for improvement and for a friendship with God.