Today begins the Lent period for the Catholic Christians across the world. Catholics observe fasting during the 40-day period between Ash Wednesday and Holy Saturday, Easter. Ash Wednesday on 9 March 10, 2011 marks the beginning of Lent this year.
There are a set of rules to observe Lent fasting and other religious rites on Ash Day. On Ash Day and the Fridays during the Lent, Catholics between the ages of 18-59 are expected to a special fasting.
Lent fasting does not mean complete depriving of foods, however. Lent fasting observers are only supposed to deprive meat from their food items. Further, a complete meal can only be taken a single time a day. Two snacks can also be taken a day. This is the Lent fasting for Catholics believers.
On Ash Wednesday, Catholics get ash on their forehead. It is performed by bishops on Churches. Smearing ash on the forehead is to remember people that they are from dust and are to return to the dust.
In fact, Ash Wednesday and following Lent is a period of time in a year, Catholic believers atone their sins and start a new life. Millions of Catholics follow Ash Wednesday and Lent all over the world.