Today is Ash Wednesday. It is the beginning of Lent – a period of forty days of spiritual cleansing and fasting leading to Easter. Sundays are not considered part of Lent. On this day, the priest marks the forehead of the faithful with the sign of the cross with ashes acquired from the burning of palm fronds used in previous year’s Palm Sunday celebration. I did not attend the Mass for the blessing and imposition of ashes because I could not get transport to church this evening.