ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) – Today is Ash Wednesday, which is the beginning of Lent. The Lent season is a six-week time of somber reflection and remembrance and is traditionally a time to fast, abstain and repent.

St. Patrick’s catholic church in Elmira is just one of many across the nation that take part in this Holy celebration. Parishioners wear the markings of the cross in ashes on their foreheads distributed by the church. It is also known as a time for families to strengthen their spiritual discipline and renew their faith.

“To renew your spirituality and your faith. it’s just a special day, today especially to put yourself back there and let the world know that you’re ready to renew your faith to,” one parishioner said.

Lent begins each year on Ash Wednesday, 46 days before Easter Sunday. If you are following the 40 days tradition, Lent will end on Holy Saturday, which is on April 8th.