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FAQs: Lent & Easter

Ingrid McIntyre receives ashes from street chaplain, Lindsey Krinks. About 30 people gathered as a community to share in the Ash Wednesday liturgy and to raise awareness of those suffering from homelessness and poverty. McIntyre is a member of Christ United Methodist Church in Franklin, Tenn. A file photo by Kathleen Barry, United Methodist Communications.

Why ashes? Connecting to who we are and who we can be

We see them on Ash Wednesday, but how much do you know about this ancient symbol and its underlying message? Read More

Lent and Easter quiz graphic. Photoshop illustration by Cindy Caldwell. Photo of Lenten cross and thorns by Kathleen Barry, UMNS. Sunset with cross at Belen Memorial United Methodist Church by Austin Bond Photography.

Lent Quiz: Take the challenge!

Another Lent has begun. How was the imposition of ashes different in the early church? That's our question for today. Come back daily to learn more. More

Fork and knife against white background. Photo by Bjorgvin Gudmundsson / Stockvault.net.

What does The United Methodist Church say about fasting?

Fasting has been a part of Methodism from it's early beginnings. There is a strong biblical base for fasting. Read More

Easter lily. Photo by Kathleen Barry, United Methodist Communications.

Why is the Easter season 50 days long?

Easter is more than one day. Why does this season last fifty days? Read More

What is Maundy Thursday?

Maundy Thursday is an alternate name for Holy Thursday. Learn more here. Read More

What is a Tenebrae service?

The Tenebrae is an ancient Christian Good Friday service. Learn more here. Read More

When did United Methodists start the “imposition of ashes” on Ash Wednesday?

United Methodists have had resources for worship that include the imposition of ashes since 1979. Read More

Display featuring a crown of thorns and cross with purple cloth heralds the beginning of Lent. File photo by Kathleen Barry, United Methodist Communications.

What is Lent and why does it last forty days?

Lent is a season of forty days, not counting Sundays, which begins on Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Saturday. Read More

Receiving the imposition of ashes on Ash Wednesday. A UMNS photo illustration by Kathleen Barry.

Why ashes on Ash Wednesday?

The use of ashes as a sign of mortality and repentance has a long history in Jewish and Christian worship. Read More