When Is Ash Wednesday This Year? Mark Your Calendar It Comes Early
Ok, I know. The Christmas holidays just wrapped up and we're barely into the New Year. We haven't even gotten past that relationship holy day of obligation, Valentine's Day. But if you're like me and want to plan ahead, here's when the Easter season begins this year.
The Easter season begins with Ash Wednesday, which this year, lands on February 26. The day before, is Fat Tuesday, Mardi Gras, Shrove Tuesday, or the day before the Lenten season begins. Traditionally on that day, Catholics are supposed to use up all their rich, decadent foodstuffs to get ready for the fasting and abstinence of Lent. Fat Tuesday is also, of course, the day that people go a little bananas, drink like fish, and try to get beads given to them for flashing certain body parts while they party their faces off.
Ash Wednesday, and Easter Sunday, are not set in stone the way Christmas Day is. Christmas Day is always celebrated on December 25. You can find out why the date of Christmas doesn't change by clicking here. Easter Sunday will be Sunday, April 12. The reason Easter Sunday isn't a set date like Christmas is because it is determined not by the calendar, but by the phases of the moon. A little pagan-y for a Christian celebration, for sure.
On Ash Wednesday, Catholics go to church to get ashes put on our hungover foreheads and chose something to give up in an act of repentance for our sins. Palm crosses from the previous year's Palm Sunday are burned and that is the ash that is used to make the cross on your forehead. Easter Sunday will be Sunday, April 12. The reason Easter Sunday isn't a set date like Christmas is because it is determined not by the calendar, but by the phases of the moon. A little pagan-y for a Christian celebration, for sure, but the origins of the feast were pagan. Click here to find out how a pagan Spring celebration morphed into the Resurrection of Christ.