Ash Wednesday is the day Catholics are reminded of mortality and hear the phrase ‘from dust you came and to dust you shall return’ as ashes are smudged onto their foreheads.
Thousands of worshippers attended a mass at Baclaran Church in downtown Manila and queued to have their foreheads marked with ash in the sign of the cross, symbolising penance and the following of Jesus Christ .
The season of Lent calls on Catholics to fast, pray and give alms to the needy.
Traditionally, the ash used to mark people’s foreheads on Ash Wednesday is from burnt palms from the previous year’s Palm Sunday celebration. It is blessed with holy water, and scented by incense.
About 80 percent of the Philippines’ 100 million population are Roman Catholics, making it Asia’s most populous Catholic nation.
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