Ash Wednesday is the beginning of Lent.
It’s a day of penitence to clean the soul before the Lent fast.
At this service worshippers are marked with ashes on the forehead with a cross of ashes as a sign of penitence and mortality. The service draws on the ancient Biblical traditions of covering one’s head with ashes, wearing sackcloth, and fasting. The ashes are made by burning palm crosses from the previous Palm Sunday.